National Park Timeline
The history of our National Park system and other federal lands began in 1790 when the District of Columbia was formed. This included what now is part of our park system; the White House, the National Mall, and the National Capital Parks. But it was not until Yellowstone was installed as a National Park on March 1, 1872 that you could truly say that the National Park System was founded. And it was a great founding. The National Park Timeline here will be organized by current park unit, in alphabetical order, and include the dates of formation, and any other changes that may have occurred.
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Natchez National Historic Park -Mississippi, October 7, 1988
Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail - Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee, March 28, 1983
Natchez Trace Parkway - Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee, June 19, 1934. Authorized Natchez Trace Parkway, 1934, and acquired 1938. Also authorized as Meriwether Lewis NM, February 6, 1925. Also authorized Ackia Battleground NM, Miss., August 27, 1935. Meriwether Lewis NM and Ackia Battleground NM incorporated in Natchez Trace Parkway, 1961. Also includes Tupelo and Brices Cross Roads National Battlefields within its jurisdiction.
National Capital Parks Central, National Capital Parks East - District of Columbia and Maryland, July 17, 1790. Originally authorized as part of District of Columbia with the White House, Capital Parks, and National Mall, July 17, 1790. Authorized and acquired Baltimore-Washington Parkway, Maryland, August 3, 1950, which was incorporated in National Capital Parks, 1975. Suitland Parkway, Maryland and DC, acquired August 17, 1949, and incorporated in National Capital Parks, 1975.
National Park of American Samoa - American Samoa, October 31, 1988.
Natural Bridges National Monument - Utah, April 16, 1908
Navajo National Monument - Arizona, March 20, 1909
New Bedford Whaling National Historic Park - Massachusetts, November 12, 1996
New Orleans Jazz National Historic Park - Louisiana, October 31, 1994
New River Gorge National River - West Virginia, November 10, 1978
Nez Perce National Historic Park - Idaho, May 15, 1965
Nicodemus National Historic Site - Kansas, November 12, 1996
Ninety-Six National Historic Site - South Carolina, August 19, 1976
Niabrara National Scenic River - Nebraska, May 24, 1991
Noatak National Preserve - Alaska, December 1, 1978. Authorized as Noatak National Monument, 1978. Incorporated in Noatak National Preserve, 1980.
North Cascades National Park - Washington, October 2, 1968
OObed Wild and Scenic River - Tennessee, October 12, 1976
Ocmulgee National Monument - Georgia, June 14, 1934
Olympic National Park - Washington, March 2, 1909 - Authorized as Mount Olympus National Monument, 1909. Incorporated in Olympic National Park, June 29, 1938.
Oregon Caves National Monument - Oregon, July 12, 1909
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument - Arizona, April 13, 1937
Ozark National Scenic Riverways - Missouri, August 27, 1964
PPadre Island National Seashore - Texas, September 28, 1962
Palo Alto Battlefield National Historic Site - Texas, November 10, 1978
Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park - New Jersey, March 30, 2009 legislation, November 7, 2011 formal establishment.
Pea Ridge National Military Park - Arkansas, July 20, 1956
Pecos National Historic Park - New Mexico, June 28, 1965. Authorized as Pecos National Monument, 1965. Redesignated Pecos National Historic Park, June 27, 1990.
Pennsylvania Avenue National Historic Site - District of Columbia, June 25, 1987
Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial - Ohio, June 2, 1936. Designated 1965 Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial Ohio June 2, 1936. Authorized Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial National Monument, 1936. Redesignated Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial, 1972.
Petersburg National Battlefield - Virginia, July 3, 1926. Authorized as Petersburg National Battlefield Site, 1926. Redesignated Petersburg National Battlefield, 1962.
Petrified Forest National Park - Arizona, December 8, 1906. Redesignated from National Monument to National Park, 1962.
Petroglyph National Monument - New Mexico, June 27, 1990
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore - Michigan, October 15, 1966
Pinnacles National Monument - California, January 16, 1908
Pipe Spring National Monument - Arizona, May 31, 1923
Pipestone National Monument - Minnesota, August 25, 1937
Piscataway Park - Maryland, October 4, 1961
Point Reyes National Seashore - California, September 13, 1962
Port Chicago Naval Magazine National Memorial - California, authorized October 28, 1992, National Park unit on October 28, 2009.
Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail - Maryland, District of Columbia, Virginia, and Pennsylvania, March 28, 1983
Poverty Point National Monument - Louisiana, October 31, 1988
President William Clinton Birthplace Home National Historic Site - Arkansas, December 14, 2010.
Prince William Forest Park - Virginia, November 14, 1936. Authorized as Chopawamsic Recreational Demonstration Area, 1936. Redesignated Prince William Forest Park, 1948.
Pu'unhonua o Honaunau National Historic Park - Hawaii, July 26, 1955. Authorized as City of Refuge National Historic Park, 1955. Redesignated Puuhonua o Honaunau NHP, 1978.
Pu'ukohola Heiau National Historic Site - Hawaii, August 17, 1972
Pullman National Monument - Illinois, February 19, 2015.
RRainbow Bridge National Monument - Utah, May 30, 1910
Reconstruction Era National Monument - South Carolina, January 12, 2017
Redwood National Park - California, October 2, 1968
Richmond National Battlefield Park - Virginia, March 2, 1936
Rio Grande Wild and Scenic River - Texas, November 10, 1978
River Raisin National Battlefield Park - Michigan, March 30, 2009.
Rock Creek Park - District of Columbia, September 27, 1890
Rocky Mountain National Park - Colorado, January 26, 1915
Roger Williams National Memorial - Rhode Island, October 22, 1965
Rosie the Riveter WWII Home Front National Historic Park - California, October 24, 2000
Ross Lake National Recreation Area - Washington, October 2, 1968
Russell Cave National Monument - Alabama, May 11, 1961
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Papago Saguaro National Monument, Arizona, established January 31, 1914, and abolished in 1930. Old Kasaan National Monument, Alaska, established October 25, 1916, and abolished in 1955. National Visitor Center, District of Columbia, established March 12, 1968, and abolished, 1981. Oklahoma City National Memorial, Oklahoma, established October 9, 1997, and deauthorized as a unit January 23, 2004. Affiliated with the National Park Service and operated by the Oklahoma City National Memorial Foundation. Some additional changes post 2003 have not yet been added to the list.