Recording Resources

The State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) collects information on cultural resources in Pennsylvania. This information comes from a variety of sources ranging from firms engaged in cultural resource management, to municipal and county governments planning for historic preservation, to private citizens interested in the history or prehistory of their property or community.

Cultural Resources is a term used to cover all of the resources that are considered by the National Register of Historic Places and includes

  • historic buildings, structures, objects, sites, and districts
  • archaeological sites and districts
  • cultural landscapes
  • traditional cultural properties

Although we record all of these resources in our CRGIS, each type has different recording needs, so we have developed a series of forms that can be used to record these resources, as well as some general guidance for all resource types.

All Resource Types

Historic Buildings, Structures, Objects, Sites, and Districts

  • Historic Resource Survey Form [HRSF], available as a word template or fillable PDF: This form is used to provide information sufficient to evaluate a cultural resource for eligibility for the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Abbreviated HRSF (PDF): This form is used to provide baseline information on cultural resources either for reconnaissance survey or for cultural resources that are appear obviously ineligible for listing in the National Register.

Archaeological Sites and Districts

Cultural Landscapes and Traditional Cultural Properties

  • We do not currently have specialized forms for cultural landscapes and traditional cultural properties. We recommend following the National Register guidance for recording these resources.

Specific Resource Types

  • Building Complex Form (PDF): for recording building complexes such as estates with outbuildings or small crossroad villages; used as supplement to HRSF.
  • Historic District Inventory Worksheet (PDF): provides sufficient information to create a record for individual properties within a historic district, so inventory IDs can be created; used as supplement to HRSF.
  • PA Farm Survey Form (PDF): provides specific data on resources that comprise a farm or farmstead. The form allows for more detail about agricultural features than the HRSF; used in place of HRSF.
  • Bridge Form (PDF): for recording bridges; used in place of HRSF.
  • Industrial Form (PDF): records both the above ground and below ground components of industrial sites; used in place of both the HRSF and PASS forms when appropriate.
  • Cemetery General Survey form (MS Word): This form provides specific data on cemeteries that is not easily captured in the HRSF, including layout of plots and names of those interred in a cemetery and can be used in place of the HRSF.
  • For information on how to submit a property for consideration in the National Register of Historic Places, please see our National Register Program community.

Completed Forms

If you need assistance with any of forms, please email the CRGIS section.

Send completed materials to:

Bureau for Historic Preservation
Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission
Commonwealth Keystone Building, 2nd Floor
400 North Street
Harrisburg, PA 17120-0093

Or email forms to the CRGIS section