What is a Collection?

A National Park Service (NPS) collection is a group of artifacts, archives, and/or scientific specimens that are relevant to the national park. In Yosemite, our focus is on the nature and culture of the area. Therefore, we have objects of all sorts! Park archealogists, historians, librarians, curators, archivists and more all work to preserve, research, and exhibit these collections. By preserving these materials, researchers from inside and outside the park can gain greater understanding of Yosemite's natural and cultural history.

What is the role of the NPS in preserving cultural resources?

The National Park Service Organic Act (1916) states that the role of the NPS is " conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations."

In short, preserving history is also the job of the NPS! The NPS manages, preserves, and provides access to our collections for the benefit of the public. Preservation and use for education and enjoyment is central to the idea of a museum, and an NPS museum is no different!


Last updated: September 16, 2020

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