DO IT YOURSELF
Would you like to do something similar where you live?
When we started working on this project, understanding the logistics (of fact-checking and getting permissions) was quite daunting. It was not easy to reach and find resources from the precedents.
We will document our steps below and continue to update. We hope you find it useful as a guide but please keep in mind that what worked for us here in Jersey City might not work for you and your city.
1. Did you find a place/person/organization of interest?
How did you find this out? What clues do you already have? Are they from credible sources? Do you have an address? A name? Having both is always better.
2. Were there really here?
looking for newspaper articles - use your public library
figuring out when they were there - speaking with the city tax assessors is great for someone's residence
3. Do you have the permission?
contact known family members, estate managers, etc. - ask for their blessing
contact your local arts council, city council, mayor, etc. - let them know of who you are and your intentions
contact current residents and/or owners of the property - snail mail and/or ring their bell
4. If people are not responsive:
call, email, snail mail, ring their bell again
last resort: put the plaque up with all your contact information sent to all people involved and wait for their response (Be nice. Make it easy for them to remove if they do not like it. Never damage their property.)