• Painting of Union cannons firing

    Stones River

    National Battlefield Tennessee

The National Parks: America's Best Idea

Geysers at Yellowstone National Park

THE NATIONAL PARKS: AMERICA'S BEST IDEA is the story of an idea as uniquely American as the Declaration of Independence and just as radical: that the most special places in the nation should be preserved, not for royalty or the rich, but for everyone. As such, it follows in the tradition of Burns's exploration of other American inventions, such as baseball and jazz.

The narrative traces the birth of the national park idea in the mid-1800s and follows its evolution for nearly 150 years. Using archival photographs, first-person accounts of historical characters, personal memories and analysis from more than 40 interviews, and what Burns believes is the most stunning cinematography in Florentine Films' history, the series chronicles the steady addition of new parks through the stories of the people who helped create them and save them from destruction. It is simultaneously a biography of compelling characters and a biography of the American landscape.

 

America's Best Idea at Stones River

Check here periodically to learn more about about special programs and exhibits at Stones River National Battlefield that highlight the special history and mission of the National Park Service.

Did You Know?

Did You Know?

The United States Sanitary Commission, a civilian organization, worked feverishly to improve health conditions at Fortress Rosecrans and in Union camps and hospitals across the nation. Their efforts probably saved thousands of lives. More...