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National Park Service

Department of the Interior, 1849 C Street NW., Washington, DC 20240


DIRECTOR *Charles F. Sams III

The National Park Service (NPS) was established in the Department of the Interior on August 25, 1916 (16 U.S.C. 1).

The National Park Service protects the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the benefit of present and future generations. The National Park System comprises 401 units. These units include national parks, monuments and memorials, battlefield sites and national military parks, scenic parkways, preserves and reserves, trails and riverways, rivers and lakeshores and seashores, recreation areas, and historic sites of American or international importance. The Service also manages a variety of national and international programs to promote natural and cultural resource conservation and to expand the benefits of outdoor recreation.

The NPS develops and implements park management plans and staffs the areas under its administration. Through exhibits, films, publications talks, tours, and other interpretive media, it promotes the natural values of these areas and communicates their historical significance to the public. The NPS operates a range of visitor facilities, including campgrounds, and provides a variety of food, lodging, and transportation services.

The National Park Service also administers the State portion of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, State comprehensive outdoor recreation planning, nationwide outdoor recreation coordination and information, the National Register of Historic Places and the National Trails System, natural area programs, national historic landmarks and historic preservation, technical preservation services, the historic American engineering record and buildings survey, interagency archeological services, and planning and technical assistance for the national wild and scenic rivers system.

Sources of Information

America the Beautiful Passes

A pass may be used at more than 2,000 Federal recreation sites. A pass covers entrance fees at national parks and national wildlife refuges, as well as standard amenity fees and day use fees at national forests and grasslands and at lands managed by the Bureaus of Land Management and Reclamation and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Five types of America the Beautiful passes are available: access, annual, annual fourth grade, senior, and volunteer.

Business Opportunities

Visit the "Doing Business With Us" Web page to find information on commercial tours, contracts and procurement, National Park concessions, and special park uses, including commercial filming.

Career Opportunities

To find permanent and seasonal NPS career opportunities online, visit USAJobs, the Federal Government's official source for Federal job listings.

Additional information on internships, permanent careers, seasonal opportunities, and volunteering is available on the "Work With Us" Web page.


An online text box allows Internet visitors to search for NPS employees by last name.

A park directory (SEP 2016) that includes park addresses, codes, phone numbers, and superintendents is available online in Portable Document Format (PDF).

Find a Park

NPS website visitors may search for a park by name or by State.

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

Instructions for submitting a FOIA request to obtain NPS records are available online.

The NPS maintains an electronic FOIA library on its website.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The NPS posts answers to FAQs on its website.


The NPS's National Center for Preservation Technology and Training maintains an extensive glossary of building stone terms.

The online series "Defining the Southwest" includes a glossary of terms that are often encountered in discussions of the cultures and environments of the American Southwest.

A glossary of geologic terms that the NPS and U.S. Geological Survey western Earth surface processes team compiled is available on the NPS website. | Email:


Information is available online for grants authorized under the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Phone, 202-354-6900.

Information is also available online for grants authorized under the Historic Preservation Fund. Phone, 202-354-2067.


The NPS posts new releases online.

The NPS website has a multimedia section that includes audio, photographs, videos, and webcam.

The NPS tweets announcements and other newsworthy items on Twitter.

The NPS maintains a Facebook page.


To explain decisions, document information, and disseminate knowledge, the NPS uses a variety of publications, many of which are accessible online. For example, "The National Parks: Index 2012–2016" can be downloaded as a PDF. The "Publications" Web page offers online access to contemporary and historic reports, periodicals, virtual stacks, and public databases.

Some publications are available for purchase in hardcopy from the U.S. Government Bookstore. Phone, 202-512-1800. Phone, 866-512-1800. | Email:

Regional Offices

Contact information is available online for NPS regional offices and parks and the Washington office.

For further information, contact the Office of Communications, National Park Service, Department of the Interior, 1849 C Street NW., Washington, DC 20240. Phone, 202-208-6843.