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Happy Birthday National Park Service

Today is the 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service.

Our friend Gary Price has a nice collection of 10 Digital Resources to Help Celebrate 100th Birthday of the National Park Service over at infoDocket. Thanks Gary!

NPR has a series celebrating the National Parks: national park service centennial as well as a good overview of The National Park Service Plans For The Future.

Unfortunately, Congress has cut the funding for the National Park Service by 15 percent over the past 15 years.

Digital Library of the week: The National Park Service E-Library

The American Library Association’s digital library of the week is The National Park Service E-Library.

  • Digital library of the week: The National Park Service E-Library, American Library Association “ILoveLibaries.org” (May 20th, 2010)

    The collection houses information on all aspects of the NPS mission since its August 25, 1916, founding. Subject matter includes archeological and anthropological research, history and natural history, urban ecology, wildlife, and geology.

How Old Is The Grand Canyon? Park Service Won’t Say

According to Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, “Grand Canyon National Park is not permitted to give an official estimate of the geologic age of its principal feature, due to pressure from Bush administration appointees.”

In August 2003, Park Superintendent Joe Alston attempted to block the sale at park bookstores of Grand Canyon: A Different View by Tom Vail, a book claiming the Canyon developed on a biblical rather than an evolutionary time scale. NPS Headquarters, however, intervened and overruled Alston. To quiet the resulting furor, NPS Chief of Communications David Barna told reporters and members of Congress that there would be a high-level policy review of the issue.

According to a recent NPS response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by PEER, no such review was ever requested, let alone conducted or completed.

Park officials have defended the decision to approve the sale of Grand Canyon: A Different View, claiming that park bookstores are like libraries, where the broadest range of views are displayed. In fact, however, both law and park policies make it clear that the park bookstores are more like schoolrooms rather than libraries. As such, materials are only to reflect the highest quality science and are supposed to closely support approved interpretive themes. Moreover, unlike a library the approval process is very selective. Records released to PEER show that during 2003, Grand Canyon officials rejected 22 books and other products for bookstore placement while approving only one new sale item — the creationist book.