Delaware Pushes for NPS Site

Mar 18, 2011
Outside Magazine

Carpentry demonstration at Dickinson Plantation; courtesy of

America's "First State" is also the only state without a National Park Service site. Although Delaware's John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail and the White Clay Creek Wild and Scenic River have a loose affiliation with NPS and the National Parks Conservation Association, neither is on the list of NPS officially recognized units (NPS operates 394 sites in 49 states and Washington, D.C.).

However, according to USAToday, leaders in the First State have proposed the First State National Historical Park, which would tell the story of Delaware's role as the first state to ratify the Constitution in 1787. The proposed park would link six 17th-century Dutch and Swedish settlements, such as Fort Christina, Holy Trinity Church, the plantation of "Penman of the Revolution" John Dickinson, and the Green in Dover.

"Delaware has much to offer in terms of history and culture as most other states have in their national parks," says Delaware Sen. Tom Carper. Alan Spears, legislative representative for the NPCA, agrees: "It's not just another park; it's the first park for the First State."

--Whitney Dreier

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