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Smith Introduces Bill to Reclassify Homestead National Monument as National Historical Park

March 6, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C. Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) announced Tuesday from the floor of the House of Representatives the introduction of H.R. 1472 to reclassify and rename Homestead National Monument in Gage County, Nebraska as a National Historical Park.

His speech can be downloaded here and a transcript is below:

Mr. Speaker, I rise to commemorate the 157th anniversary of the Homestead Act passing the House of Representatives.

The Homestead Act was instrumental in bringing settlers to the Midwest and forming the state of Nebraska, as it allowed any qualified person to claim up to 160 acres of federally owned land in exchange for five years of living on and improving the property.

Homestead National Monument, which is located in Nebraska’s third congressional district, commemorates this law.

Unfortunately, the name of this facility does not represent its cultural and historical value, as many tourists show up looking for a physical monument rather than a park, which would more accurately describe it.

For this reason, and at the request of the local community, I introduced a bill on Thursday, February 28th, the law’s anniversary, to reclassify Homestead National Monument as a National Historical Park.

I ask my colleagues to support this bill in order to maximize its value in terms of education, tourism, and economic development for the surrounding community, as it commemorates an important event in our nation’s history.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, I yield back.

To read H.R. 1472, click here.