by Corps Member Emma Cunneen
Recently, the SCA Massachusetts Historic Preservation Corps – a new program conducted in collaboration with the MA Department of Conservation and Recreation and AmeriCorps – was wrapping up one of our bigger projects at Fort Warren out on George’s Island. The project involved installing windows that we had repaired as well as painting faux windows onto about 150 sheets of plywood to cover and protect other window openings. I know the idea of fake windows may sound tacky, but when you see the finished product, they look great and really spruce up the place!
While we were finishing one particular workday, we got the wonderful surprise of meeting new Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke (third from left). He was in Massachusetts for the Tall Ships event at Boston Harbor. While he was out and about, Leo Roy, the commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (third from right), decided to have him come to the island and meet us.
The interaction was pleasant but brief. The secretary is a busy man. We were in the courtyard of the fort when we noticed a large group of about twenty people walking towards us. Ryan Zinke came up to us and introduced himself with a smiling face. He asked our names and where we were from. I told him I was from Montana – where he previously served in the U.S. House of Representatives – and we talked about our beautiful state out West for a good few minutes. After being introduced to the crew, Zinke came back to me and asked how I got into historic preservation and I asked how he liked his new job. He said it’s great and exciting and that he likes that his boss isn’t micromanaging him.
Afterwards, we quickly took a picture and the secretary and the crowd of people with him told us our work was beautiful and that the fort looked amazing. We said our goodbyes and Zinke and the twenty others continued on their way.
Emma, the blogger, is on the far left in the photo.