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WELLESLEY

Wellesley commission to identify hundreds of historic homes

Wellesley officials are working to find more homes to add to a local historic plaque program intended to recognize the importance of preserving the town’s older residences.

The effort, to start early next month, will try to determine whether an estimated 342 homes were built in 1919 or before, said Grant Brown, chairman of the Wellesley Historical Commission, in an e-mail.

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The town has already identified 923 homes that were built during that time, he said. Those older homes are eligible for the commission’s historic plaque program, a voluntary effort which issues the plaques to recognize the town’s “architecturally and historically important structures,” he said.

If a homeowner requests one for an eligible property, the plaque is affixed to the outside of a historic home. Each plaque is printed with the commission’s name and the year of the property’s construction.

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Residents who believe their home is eligible can apply for a plaque, which cost $25, per the commission’s website.

Since 2014, the commission has issued more than 100 plaques to homeowners in town, he said. Officials also have 15 outstanding requests for the plaques.

“The plaques have come to be recognized as symbol of Wellesley’s rich and diverse architectural history,” Brown said. “They are a celebration of these older homes and the plaques do not carry any restrictions — they are merely badges of honor.”

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The commission issued a request for proposals last month to conduct the research on the estimated 342 homes built in or before 1919.

The RFP was originally intended to start on August 15, according to bid documents, but Brown said the contract is being finalized and the start date is flexible. He expects work to begin in early September.

Residents interested in finding out more about the historic plaque program can visit www.wellesleyhistoricalcommission.org/projects/historic-home-plaques/.

John Hilliard can be reached at john.hilliard@globe.com.
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