A Call to Action: Success Stories

The National Park Service turns 100 on August 25, 2016. To us, it's not about cakes and candles — it's about being an organization ready to take on the challenges of our second century. Our blueprint to get there — A Call to Action — outlines the innovative work we want to accomplish. Every partner, program, and park plays a dynamic role in realizing that vision. Take a look at what we're doing and get involved!

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  • Yorktown Battlefield Part of Colonial National Historical Park

    Contraband Church Celebrates 150 years

    Speaker at podium, with American Flag over wayside, and others

    In 1863, when Union General Issac Wistar established a community for contraband on Yorktown's 1781 battlefield, Shiloh Baptist Church began. The park planned and participate with Shiloh's 150th homecoming event that included a march of the church members from their current location to their historic church site; the dedication of new waysides to tell the church's history; and a roll call of local U.S.C.Ts with flowers placed on the graves of those in the national cemetery. Read more

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    Freedom Day 150 Year Anniversary

    Singers at Freedom Day Celebration

    Greeneville, Tennessee celebrates 150 years since Andrew Johnson freed his personal slaves. Read more

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    Information Exchange

    Learning day with local partners

    Staff at Andrew Johnson National Historic Site have conducted training with local partners to share information about interpretive and educational techniques to promote public service to multiple audiences. Read more

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    Future NPS Stewards

    Students explore a Civil War camp

    Students at a local elementary school participate in multiple programs to investigate the life of Andew Johnson and the Civil War in their own community. Read more

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    Civil War Music and History

    Civil War band performance

    Students experienced Civil War history set to the music of a historic brass band. Re-enactors portrayed Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson for this special event. Read more

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    Celebrating Local Schools

    Andrew Johnson living history performer speaks to school children

    Park staff from Andrew Johnson NHS helped a local school celebrate its award as a Top Performing Tennessee School in 2013. Read more

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    The Life of Frederick Douglass

    Frederick Douglass as portrayed by a re-enactor

    Andrew Johnson National Historic Site brought history to life for 1,000 local students during Black History Month through a historical performance on the life of Frederick Douglass. Read more

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    Common Core and the Confederacy: Summer Workshop for Teachers

    Teacher attend a summer workshop

    Teachers investigated how their local community was impacted by forces from the North and South during the Civil War. Activities and materials were tied to Common Core State Standards. Read more

  • Yorktown Battlefield Part of Colonial National Historical Park

    "I thought freedom was better than anything else" Contraband Robert Ruffin, Yorktown

    Dr. Ronald Butchart presenting program at symposium

    After the 1862 Peninsula Campaign, the Virginia Peninsula was under federal control. In 1863, when President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, the area was specifically excluded; yet thousands of contraband fleed to the Union garrison at Yorktown. "Contraband, Freedmen and Community," was a symposium held on July 20, 2013 that investigated the African American Experience in the Union occupied South during the Civil War. Read more

  • Thomas Stone National Historic Site

    Uncovering the Past at Thomas Stone NHS

    Park Interns Caroline Davis and Kaylah Rodriguez with the 1860 Stone Family Census Record

    Making accessible archives online and learning about our shared history in the process. Read more

  • George Washington Birthplace National Monument

    Incorporating Technology to Teach about George Washington and Colonial America

    Exploring the touch screen Ipad exhibit

    Visitors can now experience blacksmithing, weaving, and open-hearth cooking even when volunteers and staff are not present to actually perform these activities. How you may ask? Read more

  • Wheeling National Heritage Area

    Celebrating 150 Years of Statehood with a New Poem

    Cover of printed poem with hillside in background

    In celebration of the sesquicentennial celebration for the state of West Virginia, the Wheeling NHA commissioned Poet Laureate Marc Harshman to write “A Song for West Virginia,” which was read for over 4,000 attendees of Wheeling’s West Virginia Day event in July. Read more

  • Thomas Stone National Historic Site

    Celebrating Independence Day in Southern Maryland

    July 4, 2013

    For the first time in its history, Thomas Stone National Historic Site celebrated 4th of July in a different way; with some outside assistance. Read more

  • Petrified Forest National Park

    Petrified Forest National Park's Restaurant Serves Locally Grown Produce

    Image of salad greens in a bag

    Petrified Forest National Park's main restaurant is working with a local farm to serve locally grown organic products to park visitors. Read more

  • Mammoth Cave National Park

    Tween researchers explore citizen science at Mammoth Cave National Park

    Two students collect dragonfly larvae in a pond.

    This summer, 24 sixth, seventh, and eighth graders from the Dayton Regional STEM School in Kettering, Ohio, completed an intensive, hands-on, three-week course focused on the science and history of Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky. The Mammoth Cave International Center for Science and Learning facilitated their trip and literally immersed the students in caves, ponds, and research through citizen science. Read more

  • Jimmy Carter National Historic Site

    Presidents and Patriots Bike Ride

    Preparing for a nice bike ride.

    The Jimmy Carter National Historic Site, Andersonville National Historic Site, Florence Marina State Park, Georgia Veterans State Park, the SAM Shortline, and the River Valley Regional Commission all partnered to bring a great cycling event to southwest Georgia. Read more

  • Jimmy Carter National Historic Site

    Cane Syrup Day

    Making cane syrup.

    Each year Jimmy Carter National Historic Site demonstrates how sugarcane syrup is made at Jimmy Carter’s Boyhood Farm. Read more

  • Marsh - Billings - Rockefeller National Historical Park

    Vermont Atlas of Life Field Day

    Photographing moths at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller NHP

    Dozens of naturalists converged on Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park to learn how citizen scientists can participate in the Vermont Atlas of Life project at iNaturalist.org. Walks focusing on birds, bees, plants, and moths allowed naturalists of all ages to learn more about these organisms. Participants submitted photographs online as part of the park’s citizen scientist database. Perhaps more importantly, they learned about natural history and how they can Read more

  • Cape Cod National Seashore

    Public Art Commemorates DOE Climate Research Facility

    Colorful and expressive earth energy cycle mural

    For one year, from July 2012 to 2013, the Cape Cod National Seashore hosted the Department of Energy’s Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Mobile Climate Research Facility at the Highlands Center. To commemorate the presence of the ARM facility, Highlands Fest 2013 included the painting of a mural depicting earth’s energy cycle, designed by AmeriCorps Cape Cod member Kristen Grace. Read more

  • Cape Cod National Seashore

    A Year of Atmospheric Measurements and Student Learning

    Visitors at the ARM facility

    This July marks the end of the one-year deployment of the Department of Energy’s Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Mobile Climate Research Facility at the Highlands Center. Over the past year, scientists have been collecting data related to aerosols— tiny particles in the air such as dust, soot and sea salt—and how they affect clouds and the climate. Read more

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