May is National Historic Preservation Month and an opportunity for Floridians across the state to celebrate the historically significant places in their community and the importance of preserving Florida’s rich history. Throughout the month, the Florida Department of State will continue to raise awareness of historic preservation in Florida and engage Floridians in exploring and appreciating the many historically significant places in our state.
“During National Historic Preservation Month, I invite all Florida residents and visitors to experience Florida’s historic sites to see firsthand how historic preservation benefits our economy and contributes to our understanding of our diverse heritage,” said Secretary of State Ken Detzner.“Some of the nation’s most historically significant sites are located in the Sunshine State. I encourage all Floridians to join the Department of State in celebrating the preservation of Florida’s historic sites.”
Led by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the theme for the National Historic Preservation Month campaign is #ThisPlaceMatters. The department joins the national effort to showcase ways in which we work year-round to protect, preserve and promote Florida’s historic places, including through the department’s Florida Heritage Trail publication series.
The Florida Heritage Trail publication series began in 1991 and helps to raise awareness of the state’s cultural and historical resources. Each publication offers profiles of significant individuals and identifies historical sites throughout Florida that are related to the topic being examined, such as the Civil War or Native American history.
The department has produced 15 Florida Heritage Trail publications which are all available online. A full list of Florida Heritage Trail publications is below.
- Black Heritage Trail
- British Heritage Trail
- Civil War Heritage Trail
- Cuban Heritage Trail
- Florida Historic Golf Trail
- French Heritage Trail
- Seminole Wars Heritage Trail
- Spanish Colonial Heritage Trail
- World War II Heritage Trail
- 1733 Spanish Galleon Trail
- Florida Panhandle Shipwreck Trail
- Florida’s Underwater Preserves
- Native American Heritage Trail
- Jewish Heritage Trail
- Women’s Heritage Trail
The department encourages Floridians to use these great resources to explore history and historic sites in their community and throughout Florida. As you visit historic sites near you, snap a picture and share your story using #ThisPlaceMatters on social media.
The department’s Division of Historical Resources (DHR) has also launched a series of weekly contests on its Facebook page to highlight National Historic Landmarks and National Register properties in Florida. Prizes will be awarded to randomly selected individuals who correctly identify the historic site in each contest.
DHR continues to highlight the national Preservation 50 initiative, which recognizes 50 years of the National Historic Preservation Act and shines a light on the past, present and potential future achievements in historic preservation.
For a calendar of National Historic Preservation Month activities in Florida, please visit flheritage.com. To learn more about National Historic Preservation Month, please visit Savingplaces.org.
About The Division of Historical Resources
The Florida Department of State’s Division of Historical Resources (DHR) is responsible for preserving and promoting Florida’s historical, archaeological, and folk culture resources. The Division Director’s office oversees a grants-in-aid program to help preserve and maintain Florida’s historic buildings and archaeological sites; coordinates outreach programs such as the State Historic Markers program and the Florida Folklife program which identifies and promotes the state’s traditional culture. DHR directs historic preservation efforts throughout the state in cooperation with state and federal agencies, local governments, private organizations, and individuals. The Division director serves as the State Historic Preservation Officer, acting as the liaison with the national historic preservation program conducted by the National Park Service. The Division is comprised of two Bureaus, archaeological research and historic preservation. For more information visit flheritage.com.