Cultural resources serve as irreplaceable documentation of a place’s past and continuing evolution. Without hard work and dedication these resources – and what they communicate about the collective American experience – could be overlooked and potentially lost for future generations.
What is cultural resource management? Cultural resource management involves:
- Research: to identify, evaluate, document, register, and establish other basic information about cultural resources;
- Planning: to ensure that this information is well integrated into management processes for making decisions and setting priorities; and
- Stewardship: under which planning decisions are carried out and resources are preserved, protected, and interpreted with – and for – the public.
Who do cultural resource specialists work with? Cultural Resource specialists work with:
- Law Enforcement and resource protection – for example, archeological sites are subject to vandalism and theft. Both rangers and archeologists benefit from training in archeological resource protection;
- Facilities Maintenance and park maintenance – treatment of historic structures and their surroundings requires awareness and sensitivity about above-ground and below-ground cultural resources;
- Interpretation – Cultural Resources need to be relevant and meaningfully interpreted to our visitors;
- Natural Resource specialists – Natural Resources often have cultural value, particularly to traditionally associated groups;
- Other Cultural Resource specialists; and
- Partners – including preservation organizations, academic institutions, and the public.