Professional theater of the Great Western Catskills!

Oct 23, 2020

FSC Awarded Preserve New York Grant

FRANKLIN, NY, 10/05/20 — Franklin Stage Co. is one of this year’s Preserve New York (PNY) grantees. Their grant of $5,200 will fund a Building Condition Report of their historic building, Chapel Hall. The Preservation League of NYS and their program partners at the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) are thrilled to help fund this important work.

Chapel Hall is a magnificent three-story Greek Revival edifice built in 1855 as part of the Delaware Literary Institute, which provided a classical education to young men and women from across the country until the early 1900s. From 1911-1996 the Masons owned the building, converting the first-floor chapel into a theater and the third floor into a stunning Masonic Temple. Chapel Hall is on the National Register of Historic Places as part of the Franklin Village Historic District. This report will help inform Franklin Stage Company’s planning for continued restoration, rehabilitation, and upkeep of their historic home. A $5,200 Preserve New York grant will enable the Franklin Stage Company to hire Crawford and Sterns, Architects & Preservation Planners, PLLC to complete the report.

“We’re thrilled and grateful to be a grant recipient this year!” said Co-Artistic Director Leslie Noble. “In this difficult time of pandemic, when we’re not able to produce theater, it’s heartening to be able to continue our stewardship of Chapel Hall.”

At its 2020 meeting, the Preserve New York grant panel selected 19 applicants in 15 counties to receive support totaling $193,390. Many of these grants will lead to historic district designation or expansion, allowing property owners to take advantage of the New York State and Federal Historic Tax Credits. With the announcement of the 2020 awards, support provided by Preserve New York since its launch in 1993 totals more than $3 million to 457 projects statewide.

The Preserve New York grant program is a partnership between the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) and the Preservation League, made possible with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. PNY enables the Preservation League to support projects in all of New York’s 62 counties.

Since 1993, the Preserve New York grant program has been providing funds to municipalities and nonprofit organizations that need technical, professional assistance to guide a variety of preservation projects. The historic structure reports, building condition reports, cultural landscape reports, and cultural resource surveys that are funded through this program can have profound impacts on the sites they are studying.

2020 PNY Grant Recipients:

Albany County: Albany County Historical Association – $10,000; Historic Albany Foundation – $15,000 | Broome County: City of Binghamton Department of Planning, Housing & Community Development – $8,000 | Cayuga County: Howland Stone Store Museum – $10,000 | Delaware County: Town of Tompkins – $4,000; Franklin Stock Company at Chapel Hall d/b/a Franklin Stage Co. – $ 5,200 | Dutchess County: Scenic Hudson, Inc. – $15,000 | Kings County: Prospect Lefferts Gardens Heritage Council, Inc. – $8,800 | Livingston County: Village of Nunda – $10,000; Village of Avon – $13,440.00 | Monroe County: South East Area Coalition – $10,000; Greece Historical Society – $15,000 | Ontario County: Village of Naples – $18,150 | Queens County: Greater Ridgewood Restoration Corporation – $10,000 | Rensselaer County: Troy Public Library – $15,000 | Richmond County: Staten Island Historical Society d/b/a Historic Richmond Town – $3,200 | Sullivan County: Sullivan County Land Bank Corporation – $5,000 | Ulster County: Town of Marlborough – $10,000 | Washington County: Village of Greenwich – $7,600


“Architecture and design are vital art forms that greatly impact the character and health of communities across the state,” said Mara Manus, Executive Director of the New York State Council on the Arts. “NYSCA is proud to partner with Preservation League of New York State to provide organizations and municipalities across the state with financial support to advance their innovative preservation initiatives.”


“Our longtime partnership with NYSCA has enabled us to support preservation initiatives in all of New York’s 62 counties,” said Erin Tobin, Vice President for Policy and Preservation and the Preservation League. “This year’s group of Preserve New York grant recipients continues the successful track record of this program of enabling preservation to thrive in every corner of the state.”

About the Preservation League of New York State

Since its founding in 1974, the Preservation League has built a reputation for action and effectiveness. Our goal has been to preserve our historic buildings, districts, and landscapes and to build a better New York, one community at a time. The Preservation League of New York State invests in people and projects that champion the essential role of preservation in community revitalization, sustainable economic growth and the protection of our historic buildings and landscapes. We lead advocacy, economic development, and education programs across the state.

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Contact Info & Getting Here


The Franklin Stage Company  is located at 25 Institute Street, Franklin, NY with parking in the Franklin Central School parking lot. We are 50 miles east of Binghamton, 10 miles west of Oneonta, and 35 miles southwest of Cooperstown. Chapel Hall is air conditioned and handicapped accessible with ADA ramp and bathroom.


[email protected]

P.O. Box 821
25 Institute Street
Franklin, NY 13775

Our Mission

Franklin Stage Company's dual mission is to produce professional, admission-free theater that brings together audiences and artists to create community and celebrate the enduring power of stories; and to ensure the preservation of Chapel Hall, our historic home, as both an architectural treasure and a center of community activity.