Press Release | New York, New York | May 25, 2016

#VOTEYOURPARK: 20 HISTORIC SITES IN NATIONAL PARKS VIE FOR $2 MILLION IN GRANTS BY PUBLIC VOTE DURING PRESERVATION CAMPAIGN

Created by American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Partners in Preservation Campaign Has Committed $16 Million in Support of Historic Places Across the U.S.

American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced today that Partners in Preservation (PIP), a community-based partnership to raise awareness of the importance of preserving historic places, is embarking on its first national campaign in the program’s 10-year history. To date the program has committed $16 million in support of historic sites throughout the U.S. Now in honor of the National Park Service’s Centennial, the 2016 Partners in Preservation: National Parks campaign will award $2 million in grants to historic sites in need of preservation support within national parks units, as decided by popular vote.

From pioneer cabins and scenic overlooks to sentry boxes and watch towers located in national parks from Alaska to Puerto Rico, the 20 sites participating in the program reflect the diverse communities and experiences that comprise our nation’s cultural fabric. The 2016 program encourages the public to determine which sites will receive preservation grants by voting for their favorite parks today through July 5 on VoteYourPark.org, the online portal hosted by National Geographic, this year’s media partner. The public is also invited to share their national park experiences on social media and celebrate these sites using #VoteYourPark and tagging @savingplaces on Instagram and Twitter posts.

“As a premier partner of the National Park Foundation’s Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque movement and the 2016 National Park Service Centennial, we are engaging the community in serving, preserving and celebrating U.S. national parks throughout this year,” said Timothy J. McClimon, president of the American Express Foundation. “Historic preservation is a hallmark of American Express’ involvement in strengthening communities, and we are proud to help lead the effort to preserve these cultural sites and monuments that contribute to our national and regional identity.”

The Partners in Preservation: National Parks campaign gives enthusiasts the opportunity to show their support for their favorite historic sites through a popular vote. At the outset of the campaign, the local nonprofit partner for each of the participating sites will receive a grant of $10,000, which will be used to increase public awareness about the historic structures nominated. The national parks’ sites with the most votes at the end of the voting period will be awarded grants for historic restoration projects.

“Since the inception of our national park system a century ago, the parks’ cultural resources have been central to the visitor experience and telling the full story of our nation’s diverse history,” says Stephanie Meeks, President and CEO, The National Trust for Historic Preservation. “Today, two-thirds of our more than 400 national parks are dedicated to cultural and historic significance. As such, we are delighted to embark on Partners in Preservation: National Parks, which builds on the program’s decade-long experience in galvanizing public support for preserving historic structures for future generations.”

“The support of private organizations has been essential to our efforts to care for the places that convey our nation’s history and culture since the creation of the National Park System 100 years ago,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “The 2016 Partners in Preservation campaign is a strong symbol of our partners’ continued dedication to ensure that these special places are preserved and protected for future generations of Americans.”

New to the program for 2016 is a collaboration with National Geographic, a partner with strong ties to U.S. national parks as well as historic preservation. As the media partner, National Geographic is launching a consumer engagement campaign across its digital and social platforms promoting Partners in Preservation: National Parks and inviting people to vote. By voting daily at VoteYourPark.org, supporters can also enter a sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Yellowstone National Park sponsored by National Geographic.

“We are thrilled to join forces with Partners in Preservation: National Parks and celebrate our shared commitment to preserve some of the world’s most meaningful and culturally significant sites,” said Susan Goldberg, Editor-in-Chief, National Geographic. “We love to give our readers an opportunity to engage with their passion for parks and Partners in Preservation: National Parks is an ideal way to activate our very engaged community and empower them to participate.”

The 20 national parks in contention for Partners in Preservation: National Parks grants include:

  • Denali National Park | Denali Park, Alaska
    Superintendent’s Office: The rustic, former superintendent’s office represents Alaska’s adventurous, pioneering and resourceful spirit.
  • Everglades National Park | Homestead, Florida
    Flamingo Visitor Center: The visitor center is a distinctive example of Park Service Modern architecture and the Mission 66 building program that transformed America’s national parks in the 1950s and 1960s.
  • Grand Canyon National Park | Grand Canyon, Arizona
    Desert View Watchtower: The site features historically-significant American Indian murals and offers expansive views of one of the country’s most iconic vistas.
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park | Tennessee and North Carolina
    Clingmans Dome Observation Tower: Built in 1959, as part of the Mission 66 program, the tower is the highest point in the park, offering visitors the best views of the Great Smoky Mountains.
  • Golden Gate National Recreation Area | San Francisco, California
    Alcatraz Guardhouse and Sally Port: Built in 1857, the site was the first permanent U.S. defensive facility in San Francisco Bay and military prison in the country.
  • Governors Island National Monument | New York, New York
    Fort Jay Trophée D’Armes: Designed in 1796, Fort Jay’s arch served as the entrance to an active military fortification for 199 years and is topped by the earliest domestically carved military sculpture in the nation.
  • Jefferson National Expansion Memorial | St. Louis, Missouri
    North and South Overlooks: The memorial reflects St. Louis' role in the westward expansion of the United States and the overlooks provide visitors with a connection between the Gateway Arch and the Mississippi River.
  • Joshua Tree National Park | Twentynine Palms, California
    Keys Ranch: The ranch tells the story of William Keys, who, despite the desert’s unforgiving conditions, first permanently settled and prospered in the area.
  • Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site | Atlanta, Georgia
    Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church: Built in 1922, the church served as the spiritual home of Martin Luther King, Jr. from his birth to his death, and sits at the center of America’s Civil Rights Movement.
  • Minute Man National Historical Park | Concord, Massachusetts
    Hargrove Barn and Parker’s Revenge Battlefield: On April 19, 1775, the opening battle of the American Revolution took place at this site.
  • Mount Rainier National Park | Longmire, Washington
    Longmire Historic District Search and Rescue House: The house was built in 1936 as part of one of the most extensive collections of Park Service Rustic architectural style in the country.
  • Mount Rushmore National Memorial | Keystone, South Dakota
    Borglum View Terrace: The terrace stands at the site of Mount Rushmore sculptor Gutzon Borglum’s original studio and is composed of several of the former structure’s elements.
  • National Mall & Memorial Parks | Washington, D.C.
    Columbus Fountain: Built in 1912, the fountain is positioned at the grand entrance to Union Station, making it one of the first historic sites visitors see when arriving in D.C. by train.
  • Pullman National Monument | Chicago, Illinois
    Pullman Administration Building: Built in 1880 as part of the nation’s first planned model industrial town, the Administrative Building is the focal point of the community - a testament to the American railcar industry, the rise of the labor movement and the Pullman Porters’ struggle for unionization.
  • San Antonio Missions National Historical Park | San Antonio, Texas
    Mission Concepción convento and Father President’s Office: Built in 1755, the church and convento represent the largest concentration of Spanish colonial frescoes in the country and the origins of South Texas culture.
  • San Juan National Historic Site | San Juan, Puerto Rico
    San Felipe del Morro garitas (sentry boxes): Completed in 1772, the garitas served as part of the defense system at El Morro, the largest fortress in the Caribbean.
  • World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument | Honolulu, Hawaii
    Battleship Row Mooring Quay: The quay is one of the of the last remaining structures marking the location of the American battleship force during the Pearl Harbor attack on December 7, 1941.
  • Yellowstone National Park | Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
    Brink of Upper Falls Overlook: The overlook is a popular visitor destination at the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, our country’s first national park.
  • Yosemite National Park | Yosemite, California
    Parsons Memorial Lodge: Built in 1915, by the Sierra Club, the rustic landmark is one of the earliest stone buildings in a national park.
  • Zion National Park | Springdale, Utah
    Zion-Mt. Carmel Tunnel and Highway: Completed in 1930, to link Zion with touring destinations such as Bryce Canyon and the Grand Canyon, the 1.1 mile-long tunnel was carefully designed to blend in with the surrounding landscape.

The public can get involved by visiting savingplaces.org/partners-in-preservation-national-parks for more information and voting daily through July 5 at VoteYourPark.org.

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About Partners in Preservation

Partners in Preservation is a program in which American Express, in partnership with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, awards preservation grants to historic places across the country.

Through this partnership, American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation seek to increase the public's awareness of the importance of historic preservation in the United States and to preserve America's historic and cultural places. The program also hopes to inspire long-term support from local citizens for the historic places at the heart of their communities.

About American Express

American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, foursquare.com/americanexpress, linkedin.com/company/american-express, twitter.com/americanexpress, and youtube.com/americanexpress.

Key links to products, services and corporate responsibility information: charge and credit cards, business credit cards, Plenti rewards program, travel services, gift cards, prepaid cards, merchant services, corporate card, business travel and corporate responsibility.

About National Geographic Partners LLC

National Geographic Partners LLC, a joint venture between National Geographic Society and 21st Century Fox, combines National Geographic television channels with National Geographic’s media and consumer-oriented assets, including National Geographic magazines; National Geographic Studios; related digital and social media platforms; books; maps; children’s media; and ancillary activities that include travel, global experiences and events, archival sales, catalog, licensing and e-commerce businesses. A portion of the proceeds from National Geographic Partners LLC will be used to fund science, exploration, conservation and education through significant ongoing contributions to the work of the National Geographic Society. For more information, visit http://www.nationalgeographic.com/ and find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

Media Contacts:

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places.
SavingPlaces.org | @savingplaces

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