On August 25th, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the act creating the National Park Service (NPS) with the purpose of conserving nature remarkable sites “by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.” Thus, 2016 marks the 100th anniversary of the NPS, a federal program designed to protect diverse sites which showcase the United States’ unique natural and cultural heritage. Today, a hundred years later, the Unites States has over 400 individual parks scattered across the United States. Over 290 million people visited American parks in 2014. As President Obama has said, “our long term prosperity depends on the faithful stewardship of the air that we breathe, the water we drink, and the land that we sow. That’s a sacred trust.”
Yellowstone was established as the world’s first national park in 1872. Since then it has been followed by hundreds of sites that were added to the list of the United States’ protected areas of natural and cultural heritage.
The U.S. Consulate General in Krakow has been working closely with Rocky Mountains National Park (RMNP) leading to experience and information sharing between RMNP, Polish National Parks and national parks from Central and Eastern Europe. In 2017 we will celebrate 10 years anniversary of the Sister Park Agreement signed between Rocky Mountains National Park and Tatra Mountains National Park which resulted in expanded cooperation through staff visits, joint projects and national parks conferences/ workshops co-organized by our Consulate every year in a different Polish national park to foster ties to the national park system in the United States and highlight an effective, two-way exchange.
Explore the NPS website for descriptions of parks.
Visit the NPS100 website for more information: nps.gov/subjects/centennial.