National Park Service turns 100

©Tyler Merbler

The U.S. National Park Service turns 100 today, a momentous landmark for the agency entrusted with America’s most treasured landscapes. Congress established the Service in 1916 to oversee national parks and monuments previously managed by the Department of Interior. At the same time, it instructed the new Service to “conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein … for the enjoyment of future generations.” Today’s generations are indeed reaping the benefits, with more than 300 million people visiting the country’s 59 national parks in 2015. In honor of its centennial, NPS has launched a “find your park” initiative to connect even more people with their natural resources. The most-visited national park in 2015 was Great Smokey Mountains National Park, with 10,712,674 visitors; the least-visited was Isle Royale National Park, which drew 18,684 visitors to its remote shores in Lake Superior. Read more at The Washington Post.