According to Wikipedia, there are 16 proposed new national monuments, but their prospects are fluid. Sometimes National Monuments become National Parks, like the Gateway Arch in St. Louis. The path to a new national monument or park requires executive and/or legislative pushing. Barak Obama was a pusher but got into trouble for backing Bears Ears, 2 buttes in Utah. This area might be designated untouchably Native American and left alone, remain a National Monument, or be incorporated into Canyonlands National Park. All but one of the 16 proposed are in The West. The one that is not, West Virginia’s “Birthplace of Rivers”, might skip national monument status and automatically become a National Park. Stay tuned.
The Trump Administration has already proposed 3 new national monuments in Montana, Kentucky, and Mississippi, and two of them have been declared National Monuments. Actually, 27 new sites are under review and 10 existing ones face modification, like the million acre Grand Staircase-Escalante area of Utah that is already a controversial National Monument. News about this doesn’t usually get national attention until some concrete action is pending. I knew that Barak Obama was active in this regard but did not know that Donald Trump is also. The National Monument in northwest Montana that is being considered is called Badger-Two Medicine. This is in Blackfoot territory and tied to their creation story. Will it become a new National Monument? Civil Rights icon Medgar Ever’s home in Jackson, MS became a National Historic Landmark in February, 2017. On 3/12/19 it became a National Monument. Camp Nelson in Nicholasville, KY was the scene of a Union Army Hospital during the Civil War. This seems like a natural National Monument kind of place and was declared so on 10/26/18.
The one I am personally most excited about is in the Bodie Hills. In California near Mono Lake, the proposed Range of Light National Monument named in honor of John Muir, would be near Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Park.
PS The bottom 2 photos were taken in South Dakota’s Badlands and the top one in Big Bend National Park in Texas, the only NP with its own complete mountain range inside it. I’ll probably use National Monument photos in the final NP blog tomorrow.