Portal:National Register of Historic Places

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Introduction

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The National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) is the United States federal government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation for their historical significance. A property listed in the National Register, or located within a National Register Historic District, may qualify for tax incentives derived from the total value of expenses incurred preserving the property.

The passage of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) in 1966 established the National Register and the process for adding properties to it. Of the more than one million properties on the National Register, 80,000 are listed individually. The remainder are contributing resources within historic districts.

For most of its history the National Register has been administered by the National Park Service (NPS), an agency within the United States Department of the Interior. Its goals are to help property owners and interest groups, such as the National Trust for Historic Preservation, coordinate, identify, and protect historic sites in the United States. While National Register listings are mostly symbolic, their recognition of significance provides some financial incentive to owners of listed properties. Protection of the property is not guaranteed. During the nomination process, the property is evaluated in terms of the four criteria for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places. The application of those criteria has been the subject of criticism by academics of history and preservation, as well as the public and politicians.

Occasionally, historic sites outside the country proper, but associated with the United States (such as the American Embassy in Tangiers) are also listed. Properties can be nominated in a variety of forms, including individual properties, historic districts, and multiple property submissions (MPS). The Register categorizes general listings into one of five types of properties: district, site, structure, building, or object. National Register Historic Districts are defined geographical areas consisting of contributing and non-contributing properties. Some properties are added automatically to the National Register when they become administered by the National Park Service. These include National Historic Landmarks (NHL), National Historic Sites (NHS), National Historical Parks, National Military Parks/Battlefields, National Memorials, and some National Monuments. (Federal properties can be proclaimed National Monuments under the Antiquities Act because of either their historical or natural significance. They are managed by multiple agencies. Only monuments that are historic in character and managed by the National Park Service are listed administratively in the National Register.)

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Manzanar is most widely known as the site of one of ten concentration camps where over 110,000 Japanese Americans were imprisoned during World War II. Located at the foot of the Sierra Nevada in California's Owens Valley between the towns of Lone Pine to the south and Independence to the north, it is approximately 230 miles (370.1 km) northeast of Los Angeles. Manzanar (which means “apple orchard” in Spanish) was identified by the United States National Park Service as the best-preserved of the former camp sites, and it is now the Manzanar National Historic Site.

Long before the first prisoners arrived in March 1942, Manzanar was home to Native Americans, who mostly lived in villages near several creeks in the area, and then to the ranchers and miners who established the town of Manzanar in 1910, but had abandoned the town by 1929 after the City of Los Angeles purchased the water rights to virtually the entire area. As different as these groups might seem, they are tied together by the common thread of forced relocation. Learn more...

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Biography

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Frank Lloyd Wright (June 8, 1867 – April 9, 1959) was one of the most prominent and influential architects of the first half of the 20th century. He not only developed a series of highly individual styles over his extraordinarily long architectural career (spanning the years 1887-1959), he influenced the whole course of American architecture and building. To this day he probably remains America's most famous architect. Learn more...

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