Open Parks Network - A Resource for Genealogists

open-parks-network-a-resource-for-genealogists-find-more-genealogy-blogs-at-familytree-comThe Open Parks Network was formed thanks to a collaboration between Clemson University and the National Park Service. They started working together on this project in 2010. The result is a wealth of information that genealogists may find useful.

Open Parks Network is an Institute of Museum and Library Services funded project that has resulted in over 350,000 cultural heritage objects and 1.5 million pages of gray literature housed in the libraries, museums, and archives of our nation’s parks, historic sites, and other protected areas. There are more than 20 national parks and other protected sites that are represented in this diverse collection. The collection also represents 2 state park system and 3 university libraries.

There are several collections that can be explored on the Open Parks Network website. The digital galleries include rare and unique material from the archives of national parks, historic sites, and battlefields. You can download 100,000 digitized photos that date back to the very beginning of our country’s national parks.

Collections include items from:
* Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park
* Andersonville National Historic Sites
* Blue Ridge Parkway
* Cape Hatteras National Seashore
* Cape Lookout National Seashore
* Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site
* Castillo de San Marcos National Monument
* Congaree National Park
* Fort Sumpter National Monument
* Great Smokey Mountains National Park
* Kings Mountain National Military Park
* Mammoth Cave National Park
* South Carolina State Parks
* Southeast Regional Park Office, NPS
* Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve
* Vicksburg National Military Park
* Yellowstone National Park

The materials that you see hosted in the Open Parks Network repository are from various national and state park systems in the United States. Some materials may have different copyright restrictions than others. Rights statements on the items in the Open Parks Network have been applied based on creators and source of materials.

Some of the materials are U.S. Government Works. That means the item was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of the person’s official duties. Those items are not subject to copyright in the United States. Those items have no copyright restrictions on reproduction, derivative works, distribution, performance, or display of the work.

If you want to use an item that has an unknown copyright, or a rights statement other than a Public Domain Mark, U.S. Government Work, or South Carolina Public Record, you might still be able to use it. The Open Parks Network asks that you contact them for permission to publish the items first.

Related Articles at

* Maps at the Library of Congress

* Portraits of Immigrants at Ellis Island

* Public Online Records

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