Historic Sites News and Information
Three New National Monuments Named
Adding to the roster of spectacular national history sites comes three new national monuments, one in the only state that had previously had none, Delaware, with the First State National Monument, and two others focused on African American history. The Harriet Tubman National Historic Site in Maryland and the Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument in Ohio tell the story of two prominent citizens who changed to course of history.
Attendance Retrospective 2012
Not much change at the top of the pack amongst the best attendedn National Park units in 2012 with the Blue Ridge Parkway at the top amonst all units and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park amongst parks and monuments. Among those that gained the most, the biggest increase, by percentage, was at the Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site, at 174%. At the bottom was the Washington Monument, closed for repairs due to earthquake damage in August 2011, but scheduled to reopen after repairs are completed. It was estimated that the repairs would take 12 to 18 months to finish.
2012 Top Twenty Attendance List
Kelly's Ford Interpretive Center & Washington's Crossing Visitor Center Now Open
There's more to see and do at two historic sites in the Mid-Atlantic region with the opening of an interpretive center at Kelly's Ford in Culpepper, Virginia on the 964 acre site saved by the Civil War Trust and their partners. Fought on March 17, 1863, this battle was the first large scale cavalry battle of the war. In Pennsylvania and on the subject of another war, Washington's Crossing in Pennsylvania now has a new visitor center, opened in March, to better interpret the crossing of Washington's troops and the subsequent battles at Trenton.
Richmond Battlefield Preservation
The Civil War Trust is currently engaged in a campaign to save 69 additional acres at the various battlefield sites around Richmond. These sites, at Glendale, First Deep Bottom, and Malvern Hill add to the already impressive amounts of land that the trust has added to the battlefield land already preserved by Richmond National Battlefield Park. Check out their maps some day to see just how much land they've preserved and will eventually be added, most likely, to the park itself.
Pinnacles Upgraded to National Park
President Obama announced that Pinnacles, previously a National Monument located in central California and home to caves and spires, has been upgraded to national park status. So what's that mean. A bit hard to define really, even when reading the official NPS desciptions, but suffice to say a monument is smaller and protects one significant resource or historic site while a national park is larger, more diverse, and provides large water or land areas to protect natural resources. So I guess Pinnacles is growing. Okay, they say not, but it will likely get an increase in tourism with the new designation Pinnacles was established as a National Monument in 1908 by Teddy Roosevelt at the same time as the Grand Canyon and Muir Woods.
Preservation Triumphs in 2012 at Civil War Sites
We wanted to congratulate all those who took part in the magnificent efforts of the Civil War Trust in 2012, as the preservation organization saved a record 3,735 acres of historic land at various parks around the nation. It included 39 transactions at 26 battlefield spread around eight states. Check out their individual sites to find out more and visit them during the 150th Civil War anniversary events through 2015.
The battlefields where land was preserved in 2012 are: Resaca, Ga.; Mill Springs, Perryville and Rowlett’s Station, Ky.; Mansfield, La.; Averasborough and Bentonville, N.C.; Gettysburg, Pa.; Fallen Timbers, Franklin, Johnsonville and Shiloh, Tenn.; Appomattox Court House, Cedar Creek, Cedar Mountain, Chancellorsville, Cool Spring, Cross Keys, Gaines’ Mill, Kelly’s Ford, Middleburg, Mine Run, Petersburg, Tom’s Brook and the Wilderness, Va.; and Summit Point, W.Va.
New Access in Acadia National Park
The fifth in a series of Village Connector Trails, the Duck Brook, opened last year. A partnership between the Friends of Acadia, Nature Valley, and the park helped complete this trail meant to provide better access, and reduce auto congestion. More trails are upcoming, including the trail in Trenton that will connect to the new Acadia Welcome Center.
Washington Crosses the Delaware
Nine thousand history buffs braved a cool December day when they witnessed the reenactment of George Washington and his 2,400 men as they crossed the Delaware River on December 25 at Washington's Crossing Park from Pennsylvania to New Jersey. This event commemorates the crossing and surprise attack on Trenton, that was one of the first victories for the Continental Army in the Revolutionary War.
Steven Spielberg Gives Address During Gettysburg Dedication Day
On November 19, on a platform not far removed from the original site of Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address in the military cemetery dedicated to the soldiers from the battle, acclaimed motion picture director Steven Spielberg gave a wonderful speach extolling the role Abraham Lincoln and Gettysburg played in the history of our nation. For more information and pictures of the event.
National Parks and Hurricane Sandy
All along the eastern seaboard, both along the ocean and inland, the parks and beaches of the National Park Service have been hard hit, just like everything else, by Hurricane Sandy. One particularly hard hit area is Gateway National Recreation Area in New Jersey and New York. This park, which sees over 2 million tourists in the summer to visit its beaches and history was impacted directly by the storm on October 29, and has sustained damage to docks, roads, buildings, equipment, and more.
War of 1812 - 200th Anniversary
Perhaps lost a bit in the great hooray of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War is the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, and the newly open 560 mile Star Spangled Banner National Trail. Over the next two years, various events will sprout up along the trail as the various sites commemoriate the battles and conflict. Check out the Star Spangled National Historic Trail for more information, a map, and the history of the conflict that gets less attention in american history than it deserves.
the Grand Canyon
to San Francisco Bay, all across the United States, America's
historical sites and lands attract millions of recreational tourists,
vacation travelers, and history buffs year after year. They
from Civil War sites like Gettysburg to the natural wonders of our land
at Yellowstone National Park. Inspired by the best historical
sites across the U.S.A., the website and other facets of America's Best
History strives to provide one location where the history traveler can
jump onto the trail, with a focus on the history of the best
locations. We will focus both on the history of our land, as
as our people, from the strife to found a nation, to the struggles and
triumphs in between. This site will attempt to be an
ever-changing landscape, with pages that we hope will inspire you to
remember where you've been on vacation and where you attempt to go, all
while learning more and more about the inspiring sites and lands that
make America great.
Each page will contain a short history of the historical site and its significance, whether National Park, National Historical Site, an entire city, or attraction. There will be information about the current attractions and things to see as well. Expect each page to contain links to the actual locations, as well as other items, including statistics (we love statistics). There arecurrently two main sections to the site; the U.S. History Timeline, a timeline of American History which records by decade the five most important events of each year of the decade, plus the recent addition National Park Timeline, and the second area, Historic Sites, which discusses individual locations, whether a city, state, or historic attractions within each, that are, in our opinion, among the best historic attractions in the United States.
America's Best History Notes
America's Best History and our Ellis Island page has been mentioned in an article and list on immigrant stories. Ellis Island, the processing center for many of our forefathers, contains an amazing history of how our country blossomed during the late 1900s through the mid-20th century.
Save Our Historic Sites and Vistas
From Gettysburg to San Onofre
has now passed the PA legislature,
new opportunities for the Gettysburg gambling proposal to apply for a
license. Time to redouble your
to stop any future casino effort that might come. Almost
10,000 men died and 50,000 were killed, wounded, or
missing at Gettysburg. Help retain the honor and sacrifice of
these men. It's time to promote a ban on any new casinos
10 miles of a National Military Park, which is currently being
considered at the state level. Contact your federal
congressman or Senator and ask them to
propose such a ban. To know more about the project, check
Although the current economic climate has slowed some of the troubles in preserving historic sites and lands with slower development growth, the problem of preservation funding is now in the fore even more. If you want to get involved, contact the various organizations in your local community to see where you can help. National organizations such as the Civil War Preservation Trust and the National Parks Conservations Organization are always in need of assistance.