America is a land of great natural beauty. From the Atlantic to the Pacific Oceans, the United States holds vast areas and waterways featuring many different climates; from arctic cold regions to sub-tropical – from rainforest to desert. In addition, America’s public lands protect delicate ecosystems, creating sanctuaries for plants, insects, and wildlife, some of which can only be found within these locations. Many of these lands protect dinosaur fossils, ancient hieroglyphics and the ruins of indigenous people long disappeared from the area, providing a wealth of specimens for archeological and anthropological study.

As a young country, America has survived many challenges for freedom and independence. Many early Americans worked tirelessly settling the new frontier while making great sacrifices to ensure that the dream of religious and personal freedom would be in place for many generations to come.

 

Areas such as the National Monuments preserve America’s rich historical heritage. Homesteads and memorials are an important reminder of the struggle and courage of the early settlers. While the ancient pueblo ruins preserve a rich heritage of America’s origin. A trip to a National Monument is a great way to spend the day with your children, teaching them in an experiential way about the women and men that helped shape America’s history.

In our fast-paced digital world, an escape to the beauty of nature is becoming more important than ever. Since the 2016 presidential election, there has been much controversy, including illegal proclamations, attempting to reduce or remove some of these protected public lands.

The Antiquities Act of 1906 allows presidents to create national monuments but not diminish them. Only Congress can remove a national monuments protection.

When a public land is no longer nationally protected, it is often given back to the state to protect and maintain. The result is an extremely high chance that the land will be sold into the public sector, and more often than not, this results in land development.

 

There are currently 27 national monuments under threat:

Click an image to read more about each location.

Images/Captions sourced by National Geographic – Laura Parker

 

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