National Parks in California You Must Know

national monuments in california

State and National Parks in California are abundant with natural beauty and scenic wonders, which have earned it the title of “Superior Natural Beauty Land”. California National Monument is one among them. It was established by act of Congress in 1970. The purpose behind establishing these monuments was to conserve and protect certain natural and scenic lands for the benefit of the public. All the seven national monuments in California are managed by the Department of State, but they fall under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of State.

An Overview

A close up of a cactus

State has the authority to reserve or establish these monuments, in accordance with state law. These monuments were created to preserve historical, cultural, and scientific values, in addition to preserving the environment. They were created as a result of an executive order of the President, by signing the order of Public Landmarks. In addition to these monuments, the state of California is also responsible for maintaining the remaining historical structures that were placed in place during the time period specified in the monuments. This includes; reservations, rights-of-way, and other obligations to preserve archaeological resources.

The National monuments listed in this article fall under the category of conservation area monuments. Prescription for these legal protections was created by an executive proclamation signed by president Theodore Roosevelt on behalf of congress. The Antiquities Act also lists under the category of national monuments the mineral and fossil fuels development projects intended to increase the efficiency of energy production. Other significant features of these legal actions are as follows; construction of roads, improvement of flood defenses, protection of forests, establishment of preserves and marine protected areas, etc.

Major Roles

A man in a blue sky

An additional important role of these national monuments is as regulator. It acts as the voice of the American people when it comes to reviewing and implementing policies related to the management and maintenance of these public lands. For example, if the secretary of interior sees that an agency has not complied with the law, he or she may bring to the attention of the public through the notification sent to all state agencies and offices via the Federal Register. If the public takes action on the matter, then the secretary can remove the damaging element and restore the piece of property to compliance with the specifications of the Antiquities Act.

There are many national monuments in California. Two popular locations include the San Gabriel Mountains and the Redwood National Forests. In addition to the foregoing, there are the Coronado National Monument in nearby San Diego County, the Yosemite National Park, the Golden Gate National Seashore, and Lassen National Forest near the town of Calistoga. It should be noted that under the provisions of the executive order signed by President Theodore Roosevelt, the secretary of the interior may transfer, reduce, or eliminate any national monument which is found to be no longer needed.

The Announcement

The reduction of three national monuments was announced as part of a larger reorganization effort by the U.S. Government. The national monuments were selected due to their distinctive historical, cultural, and landscape qualities, as well as their importance to the states concerned. These sites are the Bears, Cascades and San Andreas Fault. They were designated as national monuments back in 1916 and remained so until the presidential proclamation was revoked. The designated replacement sites are: The Bureau of Land Management’s Fort Berry in Arizona, Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park in Colorado, and Bureau of Indian Affairs’ Wapiti Indian Tribe reservation in Wyoming.

Presidencies and other officials made the announcement about the berryessa snow mountain National Monument in Riverside on the same day that President Obama signed into law the Antiquities Act. The passing of this act allows the Secretary of the Interior to designate a monument according to the standards set forth in the Antiquities Act if it is not appropriate for display under the current definition. This measure, if approved by Congress, will allow for the reversal of a previously approved monument’s current status. It is not clear whether the berryessa snow mountain will once again be designated as a national monument.


Meanwhile, the local government and conservation groups met to begin the process of putting together a plan for restoring and protecting the area. The meeting marks the beginning of a multi-step effort to protect the area for future generations as well as to allow local residents and outside businesses the opportunity to visit and take advantage of the tourism provided by these outdoor recreation activities. This effort is one that has the support of both Republicans and Democrats in congress, as it is one that provides a way out for businesses that provide a large source of revenue to local industries while also providing jobs to many residents in the surrounding areas.

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