Spring is coming early in 3/4 of national parks, according to a new study. Awesome? Not so much. As flowers bloom earlier every year, it’s disrupting the link between the wildflowers and the arrival of birds, bees, and butterflies that feed on and pollinate the flowers. In Shenandoah, an earlier spring is giving invasive plants a head start, and they’re displacing native wildflowers, leading to costly management issues.
Before the 1960s almost everything about living openly as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) person was illegal. New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. The Stonewall Uprising on June 28, 1969 is a milestone in the quest for LGBT civil rights and provided momentum for a movement.
Vine Creek Ranch at Death Valley National Park. Steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.
Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
AMERICA'S GREAT OUTDOORS: Salazar Announces Important Land Acquisition in Gettysburg National Military Park
Office of the Secretary
Will Preserve Site of Fighting on First Day of Historic Battle
Last edited 4/26/2016
GETTYSBURG, Pa -- Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced today that the National Park Service has acquired 95 acres of the former Gettysburg Country Club property to preserve as part of the Gettysburg National Military Park. The former country club land - now known by its historic name, the Emanuel Harman Farm - is where major fighting occurred on the first day of battle on July 1, 1863.
“Gettysburg will always have a sacred place in America's heritage for the pivotal role it played in our nation's history and for the enormity of the sacrifice that took place here,” Secretary Salazar said. “With the addition of the Emanuel Harman Farm to the Gettysburg National Military Park, we are able to include another important chapter in the story that helped shape our country.”
Preserving important Gettysburg battlefields and providing more access to visitors is part of President Obama's America's Great Outdoors initiative to create a new conservation ethic for the 21st Century and to reconnect Americans to the natural world and their cultural and historic heritage, Salazar said.
“We should all bear witness to the events that occurred at Gettysburg and its role in American history,” said Senator Bob Casey. “Today's announcement will ensure that future generations can come to Gettysburg to learn even more and reflect on what Lincoln called the ‘last full measure of devotion' on display during the three day battle. I am pleased that the Secretary and the National Park Service are committed to its preservation.”
“The Gettysburg Battlefield is one of America's most hallowed and sacred grounds,” said Congressman Todd Platts. “The preservation of the Harman Farm will further ensure that the epic story of bravery and devotion that unfolded at Gettysburg will continue to inspire Americans for generations to come.”
In 1863 the property was part of the historic Harman and Abraham Spangler farms where Confederate Brigades advanced and retreated during an attack on the Union positions on McPherson and Seminary Ridges. In the 1950s the property was developed into the Gettysburg Country Club and operated as such until the club closed in 2008.
The National Park Service has tried for almost 20 years to acquire this property for preservation purposes; however, offers to the Country Club owners and the Susquehanna Bank (who foreclosed on the property in 2008) were declined. In March 2010, a developer bought the property and created a development concept plan for over 200 housing units.
The Conservation Fund, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting important places across America, worked to successfully negotiate an option with the developer to acquire fee title to a 95-acre portion of the land, and subsequently conveyed it to the Park Service. The developer also donated a height restriction easement on the remaining 14-acre parcel, which is occupied by two clubhouses, tennis courts, parking lots and two swimming pools.
“We are proud to assist the National Park Service with the acquisition of the Harman site where Confederate and Union troops first met at Gettysburg for what would become a decisive event in American history,” said Patrick F. Noonan, Chairman Emeritus of The Conservation Fund. “As the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War draws near, our joint endeavor not only enhances the protection of the Gettysburg battlefields but also honors in a fitting tribute all those who fought, died and participated in the struggle for a national identity.”
Salazar commended both The Conservation Fund and The Civil War Trust for their work to make the acquisition possible.
“Working closely with stakeholders in communities across America is at the heart of the America's Great Outdoors initiative,” Salazar said. “Visitors who are now free to explore this hallowed ground can give thanks for the contributions of both of these organizations to preserving our national heritage.”
Gettysburg National Military Park is a unit of the National Park Service that preserves and protects the resources associated with the Battle of Gettysburg and the Soldiers' National Cemetery and provides an understanding of the events that occurred there within the context of American history.