A Methodology for Large Scale Rural Landscapes

A discussion of methodology pertaining to large scale rural landscapes. Attendees will be introduced to the survey, documentation, and evaluation of large scale cultural landscapes


Vonn Marie May is a landscape historian and cultural landscape specialist with over 20 years of project experience. Her advocacy and rigor reflects her historic preservation and legal research background. Embracing the use of historic values in planning and design she has authored several successful National Register nominations which include historical landscapes and settings. Vonn has been recognized by the American Society of Landscape Architects, American Planning Association, American Institute of Architects, California Preservation Foundation and the California State Governor’s Award Program for her project work in historic preservation and cultural landscapes. Katie Debiase, Architectural Historian at IS Architecture, brings a fresh perspective on preservation of San Diego’s built environment. She holds a Master of Historic Preservation degree from the University of Kentucky where she studied preservation of early twentieth century architecture. Her thesis project, Movie Palaces: Hollywood in the 1920s, produced extensive research and recommendations for preservation of historic resources in Hollywood, incorporating archival research, secondary literature sources, and an intensive look at the Section 106 process and CEQA. With experience ranging from cemetery restoration to main street program management, Katie brings a range of knowledge centered on historic research. Projects include dry laid stone conservancy at the Pine Mountain Settlement School in Kentucky, research and restoration of Liberty Hall Historic Site in Frankfort, smartphone application development for TakeItArtside, a public art and history app for the state of Kentucky, and survey work and report writing for the Los Angeles Regional Interoperable Communications System, Southern California Edison, and the Orange County Sanitation District. Her passion for history is evident in the attention to detail she pays to every project that comes across her desk. Ms. DeBiase’s qualifications exceed the requirements established by the National Park Service, as published in the Code of Federal Regulations, 36 CFR Part 61 (Secretary of the Interior’s Standards).

Learning Objectives

  1. How to survey a large scale cultural landscape
  2. Methods for photo documentation of a large number of built environment resources
  3. Elements of cultural landscapes on a large scale
  4. Evaluation of contributing elements of a large cultural landscape