Early Leaders of the Park Service Idea

The National Parks are uniquely American. Celebrate the visionaries who came before us with groundbreaking ideas – not only about preserving our nation's "crown jewels", but also extending the National Park Service’s mission to some of the nation’s other uniquely American treasures. Because of them, the agency today manages a range of cultural sites including monuments, parkways, battlefields, cemeteries, and recreation areas. This rich variety has created a portfolio of over 390 parks, all with their own special contribution to the American story.

The National Park Service of the 21st Century continues forward with a team of unsung heroes.  Some are rangers who lead tours and provide for visitor safety. Others maintain, clean, and repair our parks. And even further behind the scenes, are a legion of administrators, historic preservationists, archeologists, and ecologists striving to discover more about America’s past, so that it can be preserved and passed on to future generations.