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 [graphic] National Register Bulletin: How to Prepare National Historic Landmark Nominations

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U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service


The process for listing a property in the National Register is different from that for NHL designation with different criteria and procedures used. Through the National Register nomination process described in 36 CFR Part 60, a property documented as having national importance can be listed in the National Register. After the property has been listed, the National Register staff may recommend it to the NHL Survey for consideration as an NHL. Some properties are recommended as nationally significant when they are nominated to the National Register. Some National Register properties are identified as nationally significant for the first time during an NHL theme study.

National Register documentation does not require a justification of national significance, a comparative national context, or high integrity. Therefore, to become a National Historic Landmark, whether recommended as potentially nationally significant by the National Register staff or by the State Historic Preservation Offices, a property will need to be evaluated by the NHL Survey, reviewed by the National Park System Advisory Board and recommended to the Secretary of the Interior as part of the regular NHL designation process.

If a property is already listed in the National Register, the documentation may be upgraded by providing any additional information that is necessary to justify national significance and to consider the property for NHL designation. In many cases, it may be necessary to prepare a new NHL nomination form unless the National Register documentation is thorough and well done. If the National Register nomination is adequate, the additional documentation for national significance may be submitted on continuation sheets. All continuation sheets documenting national significance, as well as the original National Register documentation, will become part of the official NHL file if the property is designated as a National Historic Landmark. Preparers should ask the NHL Survey to review the National Register nomination for a listed property and provide a recommendation concerning whether it would be necessary to complete a new NHL nomination or whether submitting additional documentation on continuation sheets is the most appropriate.

If the preparer is submitting additional documentation on continuation sheets, the following sections should be provided where appropriate.


If the resource(s) having national significance is different from the resources having state or local importance, provide two sets of information for the location.


Identify the resources contributing to national significance. This may be done by listing on a separate continuation sheet the names of the resources contributing to the national significance of the property and those resources should be identified on a separate sketch map. If those resources were not fully described in the National Register nomination, they should be described and their integrity evaluated on the continuation sheet.

Statement of Significance

List on a continuation sheet which has been entitled, "National Significance" a) the applicable NHL criteria; b) any NHL criteria exceptions; c) periods of national significance and significant dates; and d) the applicable NHL theme(s) and historic context(s).

On the same continuation sheet, the preparer should summarize the case for national significance, developing the statement at the national level, and relating the property to the NHL criteria, theme(s), and historic context(s). Support this statement by the facts about the property, including scholarly citations and updated bibliography.

Geographical Data

If only a portion of a National Register property has national significance and is being recommended for NHL designation, explain the differences between the two sets of boundaries. The description should clearly describe what is within the nationally significant portion of the property and what is not. Provide the separate geographical data for the nationally significant property on a continuation sheet. This will include the acreage, UTM coordinates, verbal boundary description, and boundary justification.

Additional Documentation

If different boundaries are being proposed for the nationally significant property a separate USGS map with the boundary and UTM coordinates marked should be provided. A separate sketch map showing the nationally significant portion of the property should also be provided. On this map identify the boundaries of the nationally significant portion and the resources contributing to the national significance of the property. This should be done by coding or graphics as color will not reproduce in photocopying.


[photo] Archeological Property: Lowry Ruin, Montezuma County, Colorado This fifty-room pueblo was constructed by the Anasazi (Old Ones) ca. 1100 AD on foundations built by an earlier culture. It is unusual in that it has a great kiva, a large underground ceremonial structure more commonly found in Arizona and New Mexico.

Include black and white representative views of the resources that contribute to the national significance. Follow the instructions for photographs outlined in Section V above.


Provide color slides of the resources that contribute to the national significance of the property. Follow the instructions for slides outlined in Section V above.

Property Owners and Other Parties of Notice

The NPS will need the same information for notification of the proposed consideration for designation of the property as an NHL as outlined in Section V above.


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