National Park Trust continues to make great progress with our park conservation efforts, instrumental in adding critical private lands to other parks. Below are several new, unique preservation projects NPT is currently working on.
Washita Battlefield National Historic Site
National Park Trust is working with the National Park Service on the acquisition of an important 3-acre property inside Washita Battlefield National Historic Site (OK). The parcel, located along the south edge of the park, provides the best vantage point to view the battlefield landscape. On this acreage, the National Park Service will be able to develop an overlook facility that will enhance the visitor experience at the park. NPT’s assistance is timely; 2018 marks 150 years since the early morning surprise attack by the U.S. 7th Cavalry forces, led by George Armstrong Custer, on the village of Southern Cheyenne Peace Chief Black Kettle, November 27, 1868. Black Kettle and his wife lost their lives in the attack, and Custer retreated when he saw a superior force assembling on the hills near the village. He did not know at the time that villages downstream along the river were home to about 6,000 Indians.
(Photograph by Dave Wobser) Thanks to generous support from The Carls Foundation, NPT will purchase a property to benefit Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore (MI).
The historic Munising Range Lights and Keeper’s House complex, in service since 1908, is owned by the National Park Service (NPS) and still operated by the U.S. Coast Guard as an aid to navigation. The lights are arranged so that when a ship captain lines up one above the other, they will navigate safe passage along a channel into or out of the Munising Harbor.
Behind the Keeper’s House is a small piece of private property with a non-historic house. Purchasing the property and removing the non-historic house is a priority for the park because it would improve the historic site. The project puts NPT one step closer to its pledge to acquire and donate 100 high-priority properties to NPS, in commemoration of the NPS centennial.
NPT remains an active partner with the National Park Service at Mojave National Preserve in California. NPT turned over management of the Desert Tortoise Research Facility after Chevron Corporation, who built the facility, conveyed title to the NPS. Chevron also provided NPT $491,000.00 to support tortoise research. NPT continues to provide this funding to the NPS for the important research on the endangered Desert Tortoise being undertaken at this facility. NPT will remain actively involved in this role for several more years.