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Taliesin West





The World Heritage Tentative List





The 14 places or groups of sites featured here represent just a glimpse of the impressive variety of treasures in the United States of America that are outstandingly important works of both humanity and nature. This list is our opportunity, through the means of the World Heritage Convention, to invite the rest of the world to join in recognizing their value. From New York to American Samoa, from 200 million years ago to the 20th century, and from the bottom of the ocean to the western desert, these places tell about the richness and variety of human life, and the life of the earth, that we are fortunate to have within our national boundaries.

A generation ago, the United States took a leadership role in the creation of the World Heritage Convention and has taken a major role in shaping its progress during the ensuing three decades. In September 1978, meeting in Washington, D.C., the World Heritage Committee inaugurated the World Heritage List by inscribing the very first sites.


In addition to hosting the meeting as Chair of the World Heritage Committee, the United States was honored by having both Yellowstone National Park and Mesa Verde National Park included among the first 12 World Heritage Sites. At that time, there were only 39 nations participating in the World Heritage Convention. There are now 185 signatory countries to the Convention, and 851 sites in 140 countries have been listed.

The completion of this new U.S. World Heritage Tentative List, or list of candidate sites for the World Heritage List, marks a major step in reinvigorating the participation of the United States in the World Heritage Program. There are 20 World Heritage Sites already in the United States. In 2009, the US submitted two new nominations, Mount Vernon and Papahanaumokuakea, the first in 15 years. This list contains an impressive range of historic, cultural, and natural places of which the United States can justly be proud. These properties can well represent America’s contributions to the world’s heritage in the years just ahead.




Fagatele Bay National Marine Sanctuary Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument Petrified Forest National Park Marin County Civic Center Hollyhock House Taliesin West White Sands National Monument Price Tower San Antonio Missions Poverty Point Taliesin S.C. Johnson & Son Building Robie House Unity Temple Mount Vernon Civil Rights Movement Sites Civil Rights Movement Sites (Dexter Ave. King Memorial Baptist Church) Okefenokee Swamp Thomas Jefferson Building (VA State Capitol) Thomas Jefferson Buildings (Poplar Forest) Dayton Aviation Serpent Mound Hopewell Fallingwater Guggenheim Museum
































Criteria for Selection to the World Heritage List
To be included on the World Heritage List, sites must be of outstanding universal value and meet at least one out of ten selection criteria. These criteria are explained in the Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention which, besides the text of the Convention, is the main working tool on World Heritage. The criteria are regularly revised by the World Heritage Committee to reflect the evolution of the World Heritage concept itself.
Selection Criteria:    
i To represent a masterpiece of human creative genius;
ii To exhibit an important interchange of human values, over a span of time or within a cultural area of the world, on developments in architecture or technology, monumental arts, town planning, or landscape design;
iii To bear a unique or at least exceptional testimony to a cultural tradition or to a civilization which is living or which has disappeared;
iv To be an outstanding example of a type of building, architectural or technological ensemble, or landscape which illustrates (a) significant stage(s) in human history;
v To be an outstanding example of a traditional human settlement, land use, or sea use which is representative of a culture (or cultures), or human interaction with the environment, especially when it has become vulnerable under the impact of irreversible change;
vi To be directly or tangibly associated with events or living traditions, with ideas, or with beliefs, with artistic and literary works of outstanding universal significance;
vii To contain superlative natural phenomena or areas of exceptional natural beauty and aesthetic importance;
viii To be outstanding examples representing major stages of earth’s history, including the record of life, significant ongoing geological processes in the development of landforms, or significant geomorphic or physiographic features;
ix To be outstanding examples representing significant ongoing ecological and biological processes in the evolution and development of terrestrial, freshwater, coastal, and marine ecosystems and communities of plants and animals;
x To contain the most important and significant natural habitats for in-situ conservation of biological diversity, including those containing threatened species of outstanding universal value from the point of view of science or conservation.












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