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Most popular historic sites in America

Most popular historic sites in America
1/Walter Smalling // Wikimedia Commons

Most popular historic sites in America

Compared to most countries, the United States is a relatively young nation. Still, America's history is rich, and thanks to the foresight of its leaders, that history has been preserved for both current and future generations. From the Underground Railroad to presidential porches—historical sites offer visitors a new experience and a social studies lesson all in one. At historic sites across the nation, tourists can enter into a different time, worldview, or social status with nothing more than a park pass.

Using data from the National Parks Service, Stacker identified the most popular National Historic Sites (NHS) around the United States. These include museums, forts homes, and railways. The historical sites are ranked based on the number of recreational visits each saw during 2018. Have you visited America’s most popular sites? From an important military outpost from the 1800s to colonial-era sites in the Caribbean, read on to learn about America's most popular historic sites.

You may also like: 50 historical facts that will warp your sense of time

#50. Fort Scott National Historic Site
2/National Park Service

#50. Fort Scott National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 26,482 (8.52% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.31%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 28,948 (Rank: #48)

A frontier fort named after Mexican War hero General Winfield Scott, Fort Scott was never finished and eventually abandoned after never seeing action. The Union Army reoccupied it during the Civil War, but, again, it saw no action as Confederates only got within about 10 miles. Fort Scott is open daily to visitors.

#49. Grant-Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site
3/National Park Service // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Grant-Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 26,676 (10.82% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.31%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 24,072 (Rank: #54)

Commemorating the birth of the cattle industry in the Western United States, Grant-Kohrs is still run as a working cattle ranch by the National Park Service. Outside Deer Lodge, Montana, the NPS uses draft horses and other period implements to work cattle exactly as it was done in the 19th century.

#48. Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site
4/Ron Cogswell // Flickr

#48. Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 26,829 (31.77% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.31%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 39,322 (Rank: #42)

This Alabama historical site preserves the legacy of the African American pilots who served in World War II. Visitors can see the iconic “Red Tails” planes and learn about the airmen, as well as the women who served America at a time of war

#47. Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site
5/NickNJF // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 27,508 (3.77% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.32%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 28,585 (Rank: #49)

Originally built as a military outpost during tensions with British Canada, the Ansley Wilcox House became a private residence after five years in military service. It's on the historic register, though, not for its military importance but because it served as the site of Theodore Roosevelt's inauguration following President William McKinley's assassination.

#46. Fort Larned National Historic Site
6/National Park Service Digital Image Archives // Wikicommons

#46. Fort Larned National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 29,173 (0.05% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.34%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 29,188 (Rank: #47)

In Kansas, Fort Larned commemorates the Santa Fe Trail between Sante Fe, New Mexico and Independence, Missouri. The fort protected travelers during the 1800s, a time of intense conflict with Native Americans in the area. By the mid-1800s, the fort became a popular trading post.

#45. Hampton National Historic Site
7/Acroterion // Wikicomons

#45. Hampton National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 29,615 (8.39% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.34%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 32,327 (Rank: #45)

The Hampton NHS was the largest home in existence in the late 1700s. The site now offers tours of the home belonging to the Ridgelys, an aristocratic family of slave owners in Maryland. Visitors can also see the family gardens plantation.

#44. William Howard Taft National Historic Site
8/Jay Galvin // Flickr

#44. William Howard Taft National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 30,202 (19.30% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.35%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 37,425 (Rank: #44)

William Howard Taft NHS marks the house where the 27th president was born. The Southwest Ohio site has been restored to its 1857 appearance so visitors can enter the world where Taft grew up and gain an immersive insight into his eventual presidency.

#43. Harry S Truman National Historic Site
9/Matt Turner // Flickr

#43. Harry S Truman National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 32,878 (27.64% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.38%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 45,435 (Rank: #40)

Comprising three different sites in the Kansas City, Mo., Truman's childhood home and farm are the centerpiece locations. The National Park Service now oversees the sites since their inclusion to the historic register on May 23, 1983.

#42. Charles Pinckney National Historic Site
10/Ken Lund // Flickr

#42. Charles Pinckney National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 34,354 (36.08% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.40%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 53,744 (Rank: #32)

The South Carolina site, Charles Pinckney NHS, preserves the plantation owned by Charles Pinckney, a U.S. founding father and signer of the Constitution. Visitors to the farm can learn about the man, as well as the slaves he owned.

#41. Weir Farm National Historic Site
11/Ser Amantio di Nicolao // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Weir Farm National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 35,382 (7.12% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.41%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 38,096 (Rank: #43)

The Weir Farm NHS allows visitors a peek into the lives of painter J. Alden Weir and other artists who stayed at his Connecticut farm. Exhibits and tours at the site offer insight into Impressionist artwork and a glimpse into why Weir referred to his farm as the "Great Good Place."

#40. Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site
12/savoryexposure // Flickr

#40. Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 37,486 (83.69% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.43%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 20,407 (Rank: #57)

A historic site comprising several buildings, including Booker T. Washington's home and the George Washington Carver Museum, within the Tuskegee University campus, this historic site is open every day except Sunday. It honors one of the nation's first historically black colleges and is not to be confused with the Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site, which sits on the town's airport. 

#39. Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site
13/Jsweida // Wikicommons

#39. Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 39,361 (14.06% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.45%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 45,800 (Rank: #39)

Hubbell Trading Post is the oldest operating trading post in the Navajo Nation. The Arizona historical site sells basic traveling staples, as well as Native American art, just as it did during the late 1800s.

#38. Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
14/Marsky01 // Wikicommons

#38. Sagamore Hill National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 39,970 (27.57% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.46%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 55,186 (Rank: #30)

Sagamore Hill NHS offers a glimpse into the life of President Theodore Roosevelt, who helped found the National Parks Service with John Muir. The 26th U.S. president lived at Sagamore Hill from 1885 to 1919. The building was known as his “Summer White House."

#37. James A. Garfield National Historic Site
15/Tim Evanson // Flickr

#37. James A. Garfield National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 40,835 (23.72% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.47%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 53,536 (Rank: #33)

Stand on the iconic porch of President James A. Garfield at this Ohio site. Garfield’s porch is where he met with important leaders and voters during the presidential campaign that would launch him into fame as the 20th President of the United States. Visitors can tour Garfield’s home and learn more about life in the mid-1800s.

#36. Friendship Hill National Historic Site
16/Doug Kerr // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Friendship Hill National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 41,678 (5.84% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.48%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 39,377 (Rank: #41)

Friendship Hill NHS is a look into the childhood life of American politician Albert Gallatin through the house where he grew up in Pennsylvania. Gallatin served in the Revolutionary Army, taught at Harvard University, and served as the Secretary of the Treasury for 13 years in the early 1800s.

#35. Eisenhower National Historic Site
17/Cory Hartman // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Eisenhower National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 42,036 (16.92% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.49%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 50,597 (Rank: #35)

Step into the home of the 34th president, Dwight D. Eisenhower, at this Pennsylvania site. The former American leader farmed just beside the Gettysburg battlefield and his rural farmhouse also became an important meeting location for world leaders throughout his presidency.

#34. Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site
18/National Park Service

#34. Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 43,602 (27.04% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.50%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 59,761 (Rank: #29)

When Ulysses S. Grant married Julia Dent, he began staying at her family’s home, called White Haven. That house is now the Ulysses S. Grant NHS in Missouri, where visitors can visit the home and learn about the Civil War general, 18th U.S. president, and the lives of the slaves owned by the Dent family.

#33. Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site
19/Sdwelch1031 // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 46,407 (5.88% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.54%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 49,306 (Rank: #36)

Known as an “iron plantation,” the Hopewell Furnace NHS illustrates how mining and producing iron ore spurred the United States to economic prosperity. Visitors to this Pennsylvania site can see demonstrations and hike the surrounding area, which was originally farmland

#32. John Muir National Historic Site
20/Luther Bailey // NPS Photo

#32. John Muir National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 46,957 (0.17% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.54%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 46,876 (Rank: #38)

Near San Francisco, the John Muir NHS commemorates the life of the environmental advocate. The site offers visitors a look into Muir’s home and the inspiration that helped him found the National Parks Service

#31. Whitman Mission National Historic Site
21/Sara Emrick // NPS

#31. Whitman Mission National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 49,274 (3.18% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.57%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 47,757 (Rank: #37)

The Whitman Mission NHS tells the story of the murder of the Whitman family in 1847 by a group of Native Americans. The Whitmans were missionaries known for helping establish the Oregon Trail, though many saw the murders as a protective measure against the spread of measles to the native people

#30. Fort Davis National Historic Site
22/NPCA Photos // Flickr

#30. Fort Davis National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 49,532 (18.68% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.57%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 60,910 (Rank: #27)

Fort Davis was an important military post from the 1850s to the early 1900s for protecting the San Antonio-El Paso road. The fort launched military missions against Native Americans and protected settlers traveling throughout the Southwest. Today, visitors can see re-enactments and tour the site at night by lantern

#29. Andrew Johnson National Historic Site
23/Brian Stansberry // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 50,671 (6.16% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.58%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 53,998 (Rank: #31)

The Andrew Johnson NHS preserves multiple sites related to Andrew Johnson, the 17th U.S. president and the man who took over after President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated. Visitors to the site in Tennessee can see Johnson’s home, tailor shop, and cemetery

#28. Jimmy Carter National Historic Site
24/Ken Lund // Flickr

#28. Jimmy Carter National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 51,680 (14.91% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.6%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 60,735 (Rank: #28)

In rural Georgia, the Jimmy Carter NHS includes the 39th president’s childhood home, school, and presidential campaign office. Visitors get a glimpse into the life of the American leader and his humble beginnings as a peanut farmer.

#27. Fort Laramie National Historic Site
25/Paul Hermans // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Fort Laramie National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 52,414 (14.79% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.6%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 61,513 (Rank: #26)

Fort Laramie offered protection and a chance to trade for travelers moving across the American West. The fort in Wyoming was originally built in 1834 as a respite for fur traders but eventually evolved into a military outpost.

#26. Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site
26/Ron Cogswell // Flickr

#26. Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 54,649 (19.18% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.63%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 67,621 (Rank: #25)

Celebrate the life of early feminist icon Eleanor Roosevelt at her historical site in New York. Visitors can learn about the first lady’s advocacy for local farmers and artisans, as well as tour the grounds where the Roosevelts would escape the bustle of the city.

#25. Longfellow House Washington's HQ National Historic Site
27/Daderot // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Longfellow House Washington's HQ National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 60,527 (17.29% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.7%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 51,606 (Rank: #34)

Henry W. Longfellow was one of America’s leading poets in the 19th century, and the Longfellow NHS commemorates his life through his Massachusetts home. The poet wrote the famous piece "Paul Revere's Ride" at the site, and his home served as a headquarters for General George Washington during the British siege of Boston in 1775 and 1776.

#24. Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
28/Walter Smalling // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Frederick Douglass National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 70,869 (7.44% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.82%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 76,569 (Rank: #23)

Learn about Frederick Douglass, the former slaveand leading abolitionist during the 1800s, at this site in Washington D.C. Douglass was known for his advocacy and powerful writings, something visitors can learn about while touring his final home.

#23. Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site
29/National Park Service

#23. Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 72,047 (1.00% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 0.83%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 72,777 (Rank: #24)

Step into the world of poet and author Carl Sandburg through a visit to his North Carolina home. The two-time Pulitzer Prize winner is known for his biography of Abraham Lincoln and his talent as a folk singer.

#22. Ninety Six National Historic Site
30/Acroterion // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Ninety Six National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 95,550 (15.52% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.1%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 113,103 (Rank: #19)

Step into 18th century South Carolina at Ninety Six NHS. The site offers histories related to the forming of the United States, the battles between settlers and Native Americans, and the role of trading posts in settler life

#21. Steamtown National Historic Site
31/Daderot // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Steamtown National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 97,950 (5.78% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.13%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 103,956 (Rank: #21)

Learn the history and impact of the railway in this Pennsylvania historical site. The area includes more than 60 acres that were formerly the railroad yards of the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad. Visitors can travel along the iconic tracks in a historically accurate train

#20. Manzanar National Historic Site
32/Ken Lund // Flickr

#20. Manzanar National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 104,081 (9.07% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.2%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 114,461 (Rank: #18)

Manzanar NHS is one of ten locations in the United States where Japanese Americans were interned by the U.S. government during World War II. Visitors to the California site can tour the barracks where some of the 110,000 people were detained

#19. Christiansted National Historic Site
33/gillfoto // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Christiansted National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 107,494 (11.07% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.24%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 96,779 (Rank: #22)

In the Virgin Islands, Christiansted NHS commemorates the former Danish capital and influence of European architecture and economics in the Caribbean. Visitors to the urban park can take in the 18th-century buildings, which include a fort and a steeple

#18. Pennsylvania Avenue National Historic Site
34/Carol M. Highsmith // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Pennsylvania Avenue National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 119,616 (10.03% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.38%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 108,716 (Rank: #20)

Walk the most influential street in America, along Pennsylvania Avenue, and learn about the history of American politics. The Washington D.C. street has been the parade path of presidents and features the White House, Ford’s Theatre, and the U.S. Treasury Building

#17. Fort Smith National Historic Site
35/Mike Goad // Flickr

#17. Fort Smith National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 136,568 (3.77% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.58%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 141,914 (Rank: #16)

Fort Smith, located in Arkansas, tells the story of the Native American Trail of Tears, U.S. policy toward Native Americans, and the role of U.S. Marshals in chasing outlaws in the 1800s. Visitors can tour museums, courthouses, and local jails

#16. Herbert Hoover National Historic Site
36/Ron Cogswell // Flickr

#16. Herbert Hoover National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 138,087 (4.52% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.59%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 144,619 (Rank: #14)

Herbert Hoover NHS features the two-room cottage where America’s 31st president was raised. The historical site in Iowa tells the story of how a small-town boy rose to win the highest elected position in the country

#15. Andersonville National Historic Site
37/Ken Lund // Flickr

#15. Andersonville National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 138,164 (4.55% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.59%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 132,149 (Rank: #17)

The Camp Sumter military prison housed some 45,000 Union prisoners during the Civil War. The Confederate prison, named after the nearby city, is now a memorial to all American prisoners of war

#14. Minuteman Missile National Historic Site
38/Pi3.124 // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Minuteman Missile National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 139,273 (3.09% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.61%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 143,715 (Rank: #15)

Commemorating the Cold War, Minuteman Missile NHS offers visitors a history of the U.S. nuclear missile program and their hidden location in the Great Plains. The site details U.S. foreign policy and its push for nuclear disarmament

#13. Pu'ukohola Heiau National Historic Site
39/Bamse // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Pu'ukohola Heiau National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 145,585 (1.14% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.68%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 147,259 (Rank: #13)

In Hawaii, Pu'ukohola Heiau NHS contains the history of Kamehameha I, the Hawaiian king who built a kingdom from nothing in the late 18th century. Visitors can tour the ruins of an ancient temple

#12. Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site
40/Adam Jones, Ph.D. // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 149,098 (12.51% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.72%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 170,413 (Rank: #12)

The Little Rock Central High School NHS is a step into the history of U.S. school desegregation in the 1950s. Visitors can learn about the history of Brown v. Board of Education and the story of the nine African-American students who enrolled at Arkansas’ all-white Central High School

#11. Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site
41/Crunch // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 154,000 (17.09% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 1.78%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 185,743 (Rank: #11)

See the place where Franklin D. Roosevelt was born and buried in Hyde Park, New York at the Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt NHS. The home is also the location of the first presidential library

#10. Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site
42/National Park Service

#10. Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 189,047 (6.34% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 2.18%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 201,837 (Rank: #10)

Tour the site of the first railroad through the Allegheny Mountains of Pennsylvania. Visitors to the Allegheny Portage Railroad NHS will learn the importance of the railroad connection between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, as well as its impact on slaves, merchants, and soldiers

#9. Lincoln Home National Historic Site
43/Daniel Schwen // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Lincoln Home National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 197,717 (14.87% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 2.28%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 232,265 (Rank: #9)

Step into the place Abraham Lincoln called home before becoming the 16th U.S. president. The Illinois site tells the story of Lincoln—not just as a president but as a family man and local community leader

#8. Fort Raleigh National Historic Site
44/Ken Lund // Flickr

#8. Fort Raleigh National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 261,198 (5.01% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 3.01%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 274,981 (Rank: #8)

Preserving the location of the very first English settlement in present-day America is Fort Raleigh, nestled into modern day Dare County, North Carolina. Upon visiting, tourists can learn of the traditions and cultures of the Native Americans, European Americans, and African Americans who populated this early township

#7. Salem Maritime National Historic Site
45/Rizka // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Salem Maritime National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 300,475 (19.58% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 3.47%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 373,630 (Rank: #6)

A journey to Massachusetts to the Salem Maritime NHS provides visitors insight into the historic role of sea trade and travel in early America. The port there was a hub for new ideas, goods, and services to the budding country

#6. Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site
46/Daderot // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 340,870 (5.43% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 3.93%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 360,436 (Rank: #7)

The Vanderbilt Mansion is a symbol of a country in the grip of change after the Civil War. Visitors to the Vanderbilt Mansion NHS will learn about the architecture and landscaping of the grounds, as well as the influence of the Vanderbilt family

#5. Boston African American National Historic Site
47/National Park Service

#5. Boston African American National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 410,893 (0.55% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 4.74%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 413,151 (Rank: #5)

The Boston African American NHS is a chance for visitors to understand 19th century African American communities in Boston. The site preserves buildings and stories central to the Underground Railroad, Civil War, and abolition era.

#4. Ford's Theatre National Historic Site
48/Wknight94 // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Ford's Theatre National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 533,410 (28.33% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 6.16%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 744,266 (Rank: #4)

Ford's Theatre NHS plunges visitors into the scene where America’s 16th president, Abraham Lincoln, was assassinated in 1865. Visitors can learn about the theatre, Lincoln’s life, and the assassin’s motivation behind the murder.

#3. San Juan National Historic Site
49/Eric Pancer // Wikimedia Commons

#3. San Juan National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 910,405 (23.42% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 10.51%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 1.19 million (Rank: #2)

Learn the importance of Puerto Rico for colonization and global trade at the San Juan NHS. Visitors will tour historic forts, ocean walkways, and colonial-era homes.

#2. Fort Vancouver National Historic Site
50/Junelle Lawry // NPS Photo

#2. Fort Vancouver National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 1.10 million (1.58% increase from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 12.68%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 1.08 million (Rank: #3)

Fort Vancouver NHS includes four sites central to life in the Pacific Northwest. These sites include army barracks, a fur trading post, an air travel museum, and the home of the doctor who helped form the state of Oregon.

#1. Fort Point National Historic Site
51/Wes Klein // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Fort Point National Historic Site

- Recreational visits in 2018: 1.40 million (8.62% decrease from 2017)
- Percent of total historic site visits: 16.16%
- Recreational visits in 2017: 1.53 million (Rank: #1)

Fort Point NHS marks the military outpost tasked with defending California’s coast from foreign invaders. The fort was in service from the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s and today overlooks the Golden Gate Bridge.

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