Everett H. and Evelyn G. Ortner galvanized the historic preservation movement in Brooklyn. In 1963, after living in Brooklyn Heights for the first decade of their marriage, the couple purchased an 1882 four-story brownstone at 272 Berkeley Place in the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn. This would be the catalyst for their involvement in the "Brownstone Revival" movement. The Ortners soon became active in a variety of community organizations. They lobbied local banks to provide mortgages to prospective Park Slope home-buyers at a time when lenders had "red-lined" the neighborhood. They also enlisted Brooklyn Union Gas to sponsor the renovation of dilapidated brownstones, spearheading what became known as the “Cinderella Project,” an advertising campaign used to draw new residents. The couple were also a leading force in the designation of the Park Slope Historic District in 1973.
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