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  • Writer's pictureDante Mazza

National Register of Historic Places: An Introduction

Updated: Sep 27, 2020

The National Register of Historic Places (NRHP or "the Register") is the official list of properties in the United States worthy of historic preservation. The Register was established in 1966 when Congress passed the National Historic Preservation Act. The National Parks Service oversees the NRHP in conjunction with the Historic Preservation Office in each state, and the entire program is overseen by a Parks Service official known as the "Keeper of the Register."

There are over 90,000 listings on the NRHP, and since many of these listings are historic districts, there are over 1.4 million individual properties included on the Register. Unlike any other landmark type on this site, nearly every single county in every state in America has at least one place listed on the NRHP. Plus, the list is growing all the time, as new entries are added weekly!

The massive size of the Register is accounted for by relatively loose eligibility standards. Properties need only be historic (50 or more years old), possess a good (not high or exceptional) degree of historic integrity, and be significant only on a state or local level. NRHP listings must be officially nominated with proper documentation and have their cases reviewed and approved by both state historic preservation officials and the National Parks Service. Many, though by all means not all, NRHP properties are marked with a plaque like the one below.

On this site, Register listings can be searched by tag. Each blog post about a listing is tagged with the property's city, county, and state of location, as well as the area of its significance (art, education, politics, military, etc). Selecting any of the tags on the right sidebar of the main blog page will populate a list of all relevant entries.

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