Prairie Village carousel looks at National Register listing

Faron Wahl to attend state board meeting in Pierre

By CHUCK CLEMENT Staff Reporter

      Prairie Village representatives plan to provide support in person next month for an application to place the steam-powered carousel at the historical preservation site on the National Register of Historic Places.
      Faron Wahl, Prairie Village manager, said he plans to attend a Sept. 9 meeting of the State Historical Society board of trustees in Pierre to support the application. Wahl added that he would ask the Prairie Village directors if they would like to join him in attending the Pierre meeting.
      The trustees serve as the state’s review board, and they can nominate sites to receive listings in the National Register. The National Register provides recognition to its listed sites because it serves as the federal government’s official roster of historic properties.
      Prairie Village has collected background information about the antique carousel that includes its creation in 1893 with the merry-go-round’s hand-carved, wooden horses built in Germany. A stationary steam engine powers the carousel using a cable-drive. The merry-go-round once entertained visitors to Thomas Show carnivals. Art B. Thomas of Lennox presented the carousel to Prairie Village.
      By having the carousel listed on the National Register, the merry-go-round has access to federal investment tax credits that can assist its rehabilitation. State law also allows for certain property-tax benefits for restoration projects.
      Having a listing on the National Register does not create federal government limitations on the property. The federal government does not place restrictive covenants onto the sites or take action to acquire them.
      If any person wants to comment on nominating the Thomas carousel to the National Register, they can send a letter that must arrive before Sept. 7 to Jay D. Vogt, State Historic Preservation Officer, 900 Governors Dr., Pierre, S.D., 57501.
      The Historical Society trustees will meet at 8:45 a.m. on Sept. 9 at the Education Room, Cultural Heritage Center, 900 Governors Drive.