Shenandoah National Park ORR

Shenandoah National Park ORR

Shenandoah National Park

Shenandoah National Park is the oldest National Park in the United States. It is located in the Shenandoah Valley in the state of Virginia.


Shenandoah National Park /ˈʃɛnÉ™nËŒdoÊŠÉ™/ (often /ˈʃænÉ™nËŒdoÊŠÉ™/) is an American national park that encompasses part of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The park is long and narrow, with the Shenandoah River and its broad valley to the west, and the rolling hills of the Virginia Piedmont to the east. Skyline Drive is the main park road, generally traversing along the ridgeline of the mountains. Almost 40% of the park's land—79,579 acres (124.3 sq mi; 322.0 km.

Shenandoah National Park lies along the Blue Ridge Mountains in north-central Virginia. These mountains form a distinct highland rising to elevations above 4,000 feet (1,200 m). Local topographic relief between the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah Valley exceeds 3,000 feet (910 m) at some locations. The crest of the range divides the Shenandoah River drainage basin, part of the Potomac River drainage, on the west side, from the James and Rappahannock River drainage basins on the east side. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)


Legislation to create a national park in the Appalachian mountains was first introduced by freshman Virginia congressman Henry D. Flood in 1901, but despite the support of President Theodore Roosevelt, failed to pass. The first national park was Yellowstone, in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho. It was signed into law in 1872. Yosemite National Park was created in 1890. When Congress created the National Park Service (NPS) in 1916, additional parks had maintained the western pattern (Crater Lake in 1902, Wind Cave in 1903, Mesa Verde in 1906, then Denali in 1917). Grand Canyon, Zion and Acadia were all created in 1919 during the administration of Virginia-born president Woodrow Wilson. Acadia finally broke the western mold, becoming the first eastern national park. It was also based on donations from wealthy private landowners. Stephen Mather, the first NPS director, saw a need for a national park in the southern states, and solicited proposals in his 1923 year-end report. In May 1925, Congress and President Calvin Coolidge authorized the NPS to acquire a minimum of 250,000 acres (390.6 sq mi; 1,011.7 km.

) to form Shenandoah National Park, and also authorized creation of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. However, the legislation also required that no federal funds would be used to acquire the land. Thus, Virginia needed to raise private funds, and could also authorize state funds and use its eminent domain (condemnation) power to acquire the land to create Shenandoah National Park. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)


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