Shenandoah National Park: The Human Cost of Conservation

Christine Homa


Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia 75 miles from Washington D.C., Shenandoah National Park is a popular tourist destination known for its dense wilderness, abundant wildlife, and breathtaking vistas. From a description on the National Park Foundation’s website, it is where the “nation’s most special places are just outside your backdoor.” It offers 500 miles of trails, four campgrounds, and the scenic roadway Skyline Drive, which winds its way 105 miles through the park. What people might not know about this idyllic landscape is that the creation of this protected area involved the condemnation of homes and the eventual eviction of local families and inhabitants.

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