Brendonwood was placed on the National Registry of Historic Places on December 6, 2004. A listing on the national registry is official recognition of the serious historic significance of the site in United States history and provides a measure of protection for the property The designation was due, in part, to its unique community planning and development attributes; entertainment and recreation facilities; landscape architecture; and building structure, design and architecture.
The research and application were prepared by Sallie Rowland, a resident, and may be viewed at the Indiana Historical Society Library.
With the National Registry acceptance came the idea and possibility of establishing a Foundation that would help preserve or restore the elements of the Common areas that are significant to its history and registration. Through the years, the Common Board had lacked the man power or finances to take proper care of some of the Common Grounds, and it was hoped that a Foundation could secure additional funding from those residents particularly concerned about the historic preservation.
An attorney was retained to pursue this idea, but withdrew his efforts when the neighborhood was gated. Other attorneys confirmed the diagnosis that the addition of gates closed a foundation door for us.
However, two Brendonwood residents, attorneys Susan Haber and John Tinder, felt there might be another way to pursue a Foundation. With the assistance of the law firm of Bose, McKinney & Evans, Susan and John successfully established our Foundation on September 9, 2016. To our delight and good fortune, the Foundation was determined to be a 501c3 tax exempt foundation on January 11, 2017.
Ann Kraege, another neighbor, was looking ahead to the fact that Brendonwood would be celebrating its centennial in 2017 (as the first marketing of Brendonwood was in 1917). She encouraged a neighbor to compile a pictorial history of Brendonwood that could be sold to residents. It would allow for some funding to be available to a Centennial Committee to arrange a Gala Centennial at the Indiana Historical Society.
Leading up to the Centennial, monthly stories were issued in 2016 called “Brendonwood Through the Years.” Each was written by a resident relating their experience and fondness for Brendonwood. Stories Through the Years
are available on the Brendonwood website.
The Gala was held on January 6, 2017 at the History Center and was hugely successful; even past residents attended. The members of the Foundation Board were introduced along with the goals and requests for support. Of significance is that all the original minutes and documents about Brendonwood that could be found were turned over to the History Center to be safely archived and made available to view in the future. Much had been lost as there was no central place to store such information through the years. The History Center developed a pictorial history of Brendonwood that can still be seen in their “dark” room on the main floor.
The first order of the BHDF was to interview and select a professional organization who could study the neighborhood and its history, and provide guidance as to the most important elements to be addressed (and associated costs). That 2017 Comprehensive Study
is available on the Brendonwood website. The four primary areas named to be addressed are: The Mall (trees, plants and hedge row), the Common House restoration, Fall Creek erosion along the Golf Course, and opening of hiking/bridle paths.
Through the generous donations of many residents, we have raised funds to get many things addressed. Certainly, there are more yet to be completed.
showing the BHDF accomplishments are available to residents of Brendonwood and may be seen on the website (under the Annual Reports tab). Note that residents must be registered members of the website to access Annual Reports.