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.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR, VISITOR AND RESOURCE PROTECTION, NATIONAL PARK SERVICE,
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
BEFORE THE SUBCOMMITTEE ON NATIONAL PARKS, FORESTS AND PUBLIC LANDS
OF THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON NATURAL RESOURCES,
CONCERNING H.R. 3120,
TO AUTHORIZE THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR
TO CONDUCT A SPECIAL RESOURCE STUDY
OF THE STRANAHAN HOUSE IN BROWARD COUNTY, FLORIDA,
AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES.
OCTOBER 30, 2007
Mr. Chairman, thank you for the opportunity to provide the Department of the Interior's views on H.R. 3120, a bill to authorize the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resource study of the Stranahan House in Broward County, Florida, and for other purposes.
The Department opposes H.R. 3120. The Stranahan House is a fine example of an early Florida pioneer homestead. As the oldest home in what became Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the house has significance to the early history and development of South Florida. However, the house shares the same characteristics of many other homes, in Florida and elsewhere, that were some of the first homes built in a particular part of the country. Also, with no other National Park System units in close proximity to the house, management and operation of the structure by the National Park Service would be costly and in this time of tight budgets and a refocusing on the core mission of the National Park Service, we believe that available funding should be directed toward operation of existing units and completing 35 previously authorized studies.
H.R. 3120 would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resource study of the Stranahan House, and adjacent property, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The study would be required to be completed within three years after funds are made available.
The Stranahan House was originally built by Frank Stranahan in 1901, as a trading post, in what became Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Built at the location of Stranahan's ferry across the New River on the road to North Miami, the building quickly became a post office, community center, and town hall.
Frank Stranahan became Fort Lauderdale's first postmaster, a banker, and businessman. He married another early resident of the area, Ivy Cromartie and in 1906 the house became their personal residence. Mrs. Stranahan continued to live in the house until her death in 1971. In 1973, the house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The house is operated as a museum depicting the 1913-1915 period by the Stranahan House Inc., a private non-profit organization and we believe that management and operation of the house by this organization is appropriate.
Mr. Chairman, that concludes my testimony. I would be pleased to answer any questions you or the other members of the subcommittee may have.