Most popular historic sites in America



Slide 1 of 51: 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. We can visit some locations to pay our respects to painful pasts, and others to celebrate American icons and pioneers. Using data from the National Park Service’s Annual Park Ranking Report for Recreational Visits, 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 2019, with data released March 2, 2020. America is home to nearly 90 National Historic Sites, stemming from the Historic Sites Act of 1935. Just two years later, the first one was created with the Salem Maritime NHS. In 1966, all NHSs automatically joined the National Register of Historic Places. Today, famous American sites on this list abound from the East Coast to the West Coast, and even to Puerto Rico. How many of these most popular sites have you visited or planned to visit? From an important military outpost from the 1800s to colonial-era sites in the Caribbean, something on this wide-ranging list is sure to spark some educational inspiration, a memory, or an upcoming road trip. Read on to see the 50 most popular historic sites in the country.  You may also like:  Famous tourist destinations being impacted by climate change
Slide 2 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 25,043 (6.12% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.28% - Recreational visits in 2018: 26,676 (Rank: #49) Commemorating the birth of the cattle industry in the Western United States, Grant-Kohrs is still 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 as it was done in the 19th century.
Slide 3 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 25,978 (12.19% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.29% - Recreational visits in 2018: 23,155 (Rank: #54) Located in New York City’s Flatiron District, this three-story brownstone is the site of Theodore Roosevelt’s birth in 1858 and served as his family’s home until 1872, when they moved uptown. In 1916 the original house was demolished, so the current site is a recreation spearheaded by the Theodore Roosevelt Association, which repurchased the home in 1919. The brownstone joined the National Register of Historic Places in 1966 and today is a museum.
Slide 4 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 26,958 (7.59% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.3% - Recreational visits in 2018: 29,173 (Rank: #46) 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.

Slide 5 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 26,994 (1.87% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.31% - Recreational visits in 2018: 27,508 (Rank: #47) 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.
Slide 6 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 28,234 (4.66% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.32% - Recreational visits in 2018: 29,615 (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. You may also like:  25 of the world's most expensive hotel rooms
Slide 7 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 30,097 (12.18% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.34% - Recreational visits in 2018: 26,829 (Rank: #48) 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. You may also like: History of African Americans in the U.S. military
Slide 8 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 30,746 (6.48% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.35% - Recreational visits in 2018: 32,878 (Rank: #43) Comprising three different sites in Kansas City, Missouri, 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.
Slide 9 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 32,396 (7.26% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.37% - Recreational visits in 2018: 30,202 (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.

Slide 10 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 34,159 (18.04% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.39% - Recreational visits in 2018: 41,678 (Rank: #36) 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.
Slide 11 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 35,495 (3.32% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.4% - Recreational visits in 2018: 34,354 (Rank: #42) 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. You may also like:  Must-do activities at every national park
Slide 12 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 36,395 (2.91% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.41% - Recreational visits in 2018: 37,486 (Rank: #40) 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 at the town's airport.
Slide 13 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 36,738 (8.09% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.42% - Recreational visits in 2018: 39,970 (Rank: #38) 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.
Slide 14 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 38,700 (9.38% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.44% - Recreational visits in 2018: 35,382 (Rank: #41) 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."

Slide 15 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 39,449 (9.52% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.45% - Recreational visits in 2018: 43,602 (Rank: #34) 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.
Slide 16 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 40,725 (13.27% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.46% - Recreational visits in 2018: 46,957 (Rank: #32) 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 You may also like:  Top rated museums in the U.S.
Slide 17 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 41,305 (1.15% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.47% - Recreational visits in 2018: 40,835 (Rank: #37) 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.
Slide 18 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 42,892 (18.17% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.48% - Recreational visits in 2018: 52,414 (Rank: #27) 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.
Slide 19 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 47,277 (12.47% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.53% - Recreational visits in 2018: 42,036 (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.
Slide 20 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 47,630 (12.84% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.54% - Recreational visits in 2018: 54,649 (Rank: #26) 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.
Slide 21 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 48,481 (1.61% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.55% - Recreational visits in 2018: 49,274 (Rank: #31) 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; many saw the murders as a protective measure against the spread of measles to the native people. You may also like:  Most popular national parks in America
Slide 22 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 49,861 (7.44% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.56% - Recreational visits in 2018: 46,407 (Rank: #33) 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.
Slide 23 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 50,285 (27.75% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.57% - Recreational visits in 2018: 39,361 (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.
Slide 24 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 50,789 (1.72% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.57% - Recreational visits in 2018: 51,680 (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.
Slide 25 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 51,189 (1.02% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.58% - Recreational visits in 2018: 50,671 (Rank: #29) 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.
Slide 26 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 51,995 (4.97% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.59% - Recreational visits in 2018: 49,532 (Rank: #30) 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. You may also like:  Film and TV-themed bars and restaurants to visit
Slide 27 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 55,012 (9.11% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.62% - Recreational visits in 2018: 60,527 (Rank: #25) 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 Gen. George Washington during the British siege of Boston in 1775 and 1776.
Slide 28 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 61,063 (13.84% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.69% - Recreational visits in 2018: 70,869 (Rank: #24) Learn about Frederick Douglass, the former slave and 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.
Slide 29 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 78,144 (8.46% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 0.88% - Recreational visits in 2018: 72,047 (Rank: #23) 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.
Slide 30 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 97,295 (1.83% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.1% - Recreational visits in 2018: 95,550 (Rank: #22) 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.
Slide 31 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 97,380 (6.44% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.1% - Recreational visits in 2018: 104,081 (Rank: #20) Manzanar NHS is one of 10 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. You may also like:  America's biggest travel nightmares (and how to avoid them)
Slide 32 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 103,594 (3.63% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.17% - Recreational visits in 2018: 107,494 (Rank: #19) 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.
Slide 33 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 103,635 (24.99% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.17% - Recreational visits in 2018: 138,164 (Rank: #15) 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
Slide 34 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 105,403 (7.61% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.19% - Recreational visits in 2018: 97,950 (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.
Slide 35 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 125,035 (4.53% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.41% - Recreational visits in 2018: 119,616 (Rank: #18) 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.
Slide 36 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 125,500 (8.1% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.42% - Recreational visits in 2018: 136,568 (Rank: #17) 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. You may also like:  Most popular amusement parks worldwide
Slide 37 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 125,688 (8.98% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.42% - Recreational visits in 2018: 138,087 (Rank: #16) 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.
Slide 38 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 125,776 (9.69% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.42% - Recreational visits in 2018: 139,273 (Rank: #14) 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.
Slide 39 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 133,573 (8.25% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.51% - Recreational visits in 2018: 145,585 (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.
Slide 40 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 147,109 (4.47% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.66% - Recreational visits in 2018: 154,000 (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.
Slide 41 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 168,918 (13.29% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 1.91% - Recreational visits in 2018: 149,098 (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. You may also like:  Most fun cities in America
Slide 42 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 189,189 (0.08% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 2.14% - Recreational visits in 2018: 189,047 (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.
Slide 43 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 197,816 (0.05% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 2.24% - Recreational visits in 2018: 197,717 (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.
Slide 44 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 248,139 (5% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 2.8% - Recreational visits in 2018: 261,198 (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.
Slide 45 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 326,822 (4.12% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 3.69% - Recreational visits in 2018: 340,870 (Rank: #6) 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.
Slide 46 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 339,238 (12.9% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 3.83% - Recreational visits in 2018: 300,475 (Rank: #7) 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. You may also like:  Strange laws to be aware of in the most popular countries for tourists
Slide 47 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 419,585 (2.12% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 4.74% - Recreational visits in 2018: 410,893 (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.
Slide 48 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 572,373 (7.3% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 6.47% - Recreational visits in 2018: 533,410 (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.
Slide 49 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 1.02 million (7.31% decrease from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 11.51% - Recreational visits in 2018: 1.1 million (Rank: #2) 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.
Slide 50 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 1.2 million (31.52% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 13.53% - Recreational visits in 2018: 910,405 (Rank: #3) 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.
Slide 51 of 51: - Recreational visits in 2019: 1.42 million (1.49% increase from 2018) - Share of total historic site visits: 16.06% - Recreational visits in 2018: 1.4 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. You may also like:  Least visited destinations in the world

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. We can visit some locations to pay our respects to painful pasts, and others to celebrate American icons and pioneers.

Using data from the National Park Service’s Annual Park Ranking Report for Recreational Visits, 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 2019, with data released March 2, 2020.

America is home to nearly 90 National Historic Sites, stemming from the Historic Sites Act of 1935. Just two years later, the first one was created with the Salem Maritime NHS. In 1966, all NHSs automatically joined the National Register of Historic Places. Today, famous American sites on this list abound from the East Coast to the West Coast, and even to Puerto Rico.

How many of these most popular sites have you visited or planned to visit? From an important military outpost from the 1800s to colonial-era sites in the Caribbean, something on this wide-ranging list is sure to spark some educational inspiration, a memory, or an upcoming road trip. Read on to see the 50 most popular historic sites in the country. 

You may also like: Famous tourist destinations being impacted by climate change

#50. Grant-Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 25,043 (6.12% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.28%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 26,676 (Rank: #49)

Commemorating the birth of the cattle industry in the Western United States, Grant-Kohrs is still 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 as it was done in the 19th century.

#49. Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 25,978 (12.19% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.29%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 23,155 (Rank: #54)

Located in New York City’s Flatiron District, this three-story brownstone is the site of Theodore Roosevelt’s birth in 1858 and served as his family’s home until 1872, when they moved uptown. In 1916 the original house was demolished, so the current site is a recreation spearheaded by the Theodore Roosevelt Association, which repurchased the home in 1919. The brownstone joined the National Register of Historic Places in 1966 and today is a museum.

#48. Fort Larned National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 26,958 (7.59% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.3%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 29,173 (Rank: #46)

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.

#47. Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 26,994 (1.87% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.31%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 27,508 (Rank: #47)

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. Hampton National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 28,234 (4.66% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.32%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 29,615 (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.

You may also like: 25 of the world’s most expensive hotel rooms

#45. Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 30,097 (12.18% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.34%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 26,829 (Rank: #48)

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.

You may also like: History of African Americans in the U.S. military

#44. Harry S Truman National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 30,746 (6.48% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.35%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 32,878 (Rank: #43)

Comprising three different sites in Kansas City, Missouri, 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.

#43. William Howard Taft National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 32,396 (7.26% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.37%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 30,202 (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.

#42. Friendship Hill National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 34,159 (18.04% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.39%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 41,678 (Rank: #36)

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.

#41. Charles Pinckney National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 35,495 (3.32% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.4%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 34,354 (Rank: #42)

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.

You may also like: Must-do activities at every national park

#40. Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 36,395 (2.91% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.41%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 37,486 (Rank: #40)

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 at the town’s airport.

#39. Sagamore Hill National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 36,738 (8.09% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.42%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 39,970 (Rank: #38)

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.

#38. Weir Farm National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 38,700 (9.38% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.44%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 35,382 (Rank: #41)

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.”

#37. Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 39,449 (9.52% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.45%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 43,602 (Rank: #34)

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.

#36. John Muir National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 40,725 (13.27% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.46%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 46,957 (Rank: #32)

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

You may also like: Top rated museums in the U.S.

#35. James A. Garfield National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 41,305 (1.15% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.47%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 40,835 (Rank: #37)

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.

#34. Fort Laramie National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 42,892 (18.17% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.48%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 52,414 (Rank: #27)

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.

#33. Eisenhower National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 47,277 (12.47% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.53%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 42,036 (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.

#32. Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 47,630 (12.84% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.54%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 54,649 (Rank: #26)

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.

#31. Whitman Mission National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 48,481 (1.61% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.55%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 49,274 (Rank: #31)

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; many saw the murders as a protective measure against the spread of measles to the native people.

You may also like: Most popular national parks in America

#30. Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 49,861 (7.44% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.56%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 46,407 (Rank: #33)

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.

#29. Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 50,285 (27.75% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.57%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 39,361 (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.

#28. Jimmy Carter National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 50,789 (1.72% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.57%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 51,680 (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. Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 51,189 (1.02% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.58%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 50,671 (Rank: #29)

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.

#26. Fort Davis National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 51,995 (4.97% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.59%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 49,532 (Rank: #30)

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.

You may also like: Film and TV-themed bars and restaurants to visit

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

– Recreational visits in 2019: 55,012 (9.11% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.62%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 60,527 (Rank: #25)

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 Gen. George Washington during the British siege of Boston in 1775 and 1776.

#24. Frederick Douglass National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 61,063 (13.84% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.69%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 70,869 (Rank: #24)

Learn about Frederick Douglass, the former slave and 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

– Recreational visits in 2019: 78,144 (8.46% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 0.88%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 72,047 (Rank: #23)

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

– Recreational visits in 2019: 97,295 (1.83% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.1%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 95,550 (Rank: #22)

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. Manzanar National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 97,380 (6.44% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.1%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 104,081 (Rank: #20)

Manzanar NHS is one of 10 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.

You may also like: America’s biggest travel nightmares (and how to avoid them)

#20. Christiansted National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 103,594 (3.63% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.17%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 107,494 (Rank: #19)

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.

#19. Andersonville National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 103,635 (24.99% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.17%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 138,164 (Rank: #15)

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

#18. Steamtown National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 105,403 (7.61% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.19%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 97,950 (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.

#17. Pennsylvania Avenue National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 125,035 (4.53% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.41%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 119,616 (Rank: #18)

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.

#16. Fort Smith National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 125,500 (8.1% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.42%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 136,568 (Rank: #17)

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.

You may also like: Most popular amusement parks worldwide

#15. Herbert Hoover National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 125,688 (8.98% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.42%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 138,087 (Rank: #16)

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.

#14. Minuteman Missile National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 125,776 (9.69% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.42%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 139,273 (Rank: #14)

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

– Recreational visits in 2019: 133,573 (8.25% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.51%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 145,585 (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. Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 147,109 (4.47% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.66%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 154,000 (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.

#11. Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 168,918 (13.29% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 1.91%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 149,098 (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.

You may also like: Most fun cities in America

#10. Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 189,189 (0.08% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 2.14%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 189,047 (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

– Recreational visits in 2019: 197,816 (0.05% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 2.24%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 197,717 (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

– Recreational visits in 2019: 248,139 (5% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 2.8%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 261,198 (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. Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 326,822 (4.12% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 3.69%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 340,870 (Rank: #6)

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.

#6. Salem Maritime National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 339,238 (12.9% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 3.83%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 300,475 (Rank: #7)

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.

You may also like: Strange laws to be aware of in the most popular countries for tourists

#5. Boston African American National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 419,585 (2.12% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 4.74%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 410,893 (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

– Recreational visits in 2019: 572,373 (7.3% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 6.47%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 533,410 (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. Fort Vancouver National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 1.02 million (7.31% decrease from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 11.51%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 1.1 million (Rank: #2)

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.

#2. San Juan National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 1.2 million (31.52% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 13.53%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 910,405 (Rank: #3)

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.

#1. Fort Point National Historic Site

– Recreational visits in 2019: 1.42 million (1.49% increase from 2018)
– Share of total historic site visits: 16.06%
– Recreational visits in 2018: 1.4 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.

You may also like: Least visited destinations in the world

Source: Read Full Article