The mission of the National Park Service is to protect and preserve the natural and cultural resources of this country for the benefit of the American people. We see this at national parks across the country: Yellowstone, Yosemite, the Grand Canyon. And every day, park rangers arrive for work at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site because they are public servants who care about connecting the people of this community to their history.
We should be honored to have the NPS as part of our community, because it is recognition on a national scale that the history of Vancouver is an integral part of the history of our nation.
Regarding their current conflict with the Fort Vancouver National Trust and the city of Vancouver, had the museum remained in place, and not senselessly dismantled by the Trust, the NPS, “America’s Best Idea,” would have been an excellent steward of that museum and collections it housed. It is truly shameful and telling that the Trust immediately stooped to this level, instead of using the transfer period to negotiate continued, uninterrupted public service and access to the educational materials to the public.