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Preservation: Mineral King Mandate

In April of 1998, a plan was presented to Sequoia and King’s Canyon National Parks for the establishment of the Mineral King Living Historic Community through a partnership agreement with the National Park Service. Inclusion of the plan in Sequoia/Kings Canyon’s new General Management Plan was requested.

Part Three: The Mineral King Living Historic Community Proposal

Letter to Mike Tollefson, Superintendent of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks and Susan Spain, General Management Plan team captain from Les Reynolds, President Mineral King District Association and Don Pinkham, President Mineral King Preservation Society.


April 17, 1998

RE: MINERAL KING LIVING HISTORIC COMMUNITY PROPOSAL

Dear Mr. Tollefson and Ms. Spain:

On behalf of the Mineral King Advocates, we submit the attached proposal foe establishing the Mineral King Living Historic Community through a partnership agreement with the National Park Service. We request that the General Management Plan (GMP) for Sequoia and Kings National Parks support this proposal. For your convenience, we have provided language for inclusion in the GMP.

The Mineral King Living Historic Community Proposal provides an innovative plan for the preservation, protection and maintenance of the cultural resources of Mineral King. The ever decreasing amount of NPS funding has resulted in the deterioration of many valuable historic sites, buildings and areas within Mineral King as well as within the rest of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. This plan will reserve this disturbing trend, ensuring that visitors to Mineral King during the 21st century and beyond will have the opportunity to learn about not only the magnificent flora, fauna and geology of the are, but also understand the cultural heritage of Mineral King. They will be able to see and experience the historic sites through walks, tours, and talks, instead of limiting their experience to merely looking at pictures and artifacts. It will add a whole new dimension to the visitors’ experience and enjoyment of the Mineral King area. Mineral King holds a valuable link to our past, an opportunity for the public to learn about society's changing perception and relationship with the Sierran environment.

We propose to assist the NPS in meeting its obligations and responsibilities under the National Historic Preservation Act by establishing a public/non-profit partnership with the NPS. Parks across the country are instituting such partnerships with local governments and non-profit organizations in order to meet the increasing management and financial demands that our national parks are facing. These plans have the foresight to recognize both the necessity and the value of working with the community to achieve NPS goals. Mineral King is in the unique and fortunate position of already possessing a vibrant community – a living link to the valley's colorful past and its evolution from one of resource exploitation to one of resource preservation. With its wealth of knowledge about Mineral King and its dedication to the preservation of the natural and cultural resources of the area, this community has much to offer both the public and the NPS through a partnership agreement.

Mineral King Advocates shares the NPS goal of ensuring that all of Mineral King's diverse resources will be preserved and protected to enable future generations to enjoy them and to learn from them. Our plan fully supports this goal and will help the NPS to accomplish and fulfill its wide range of responsibilities. We strongly request that the NPS include the Mineral King Living Historic Proposal in the General Management Plan for Sequoia and Kings National Parks.

We will be in contact with you to set up a time when we can meet to discuss this proposal further. In the meantime, please call if you have any questions.

Thank you for your consideration and your efforts on behalf of Sequoia and King Canyon National Parks.

Sincerely,

Les Reynolds
President
Mineral King District Association

Don Pinkham
President
Mineral King Preservation Society

Mineral King Plan to be incorporated into the Sequoia and Kings Canyon General Management Plan:

This plan maintains the current pattern, density and level of public use and retains the traditional character of the Mineral King Valley. The types of visitor experiences remain unchanged and continue to provide an alternative experience for park visitors in contrast to the more highly developed areas of Sequoia and Kings Canyon. Special use cabin permits will be offered in 5 year increments on a renewable basis for the duration of the management plan, ensuring the continuity of the Mineral King Living Historic Community. Residents will form a public/non-profit partnership with NPS based on the mutual goal of natural and cultural resource preservation. Residents will assist in the maintenance and financial responsibilities of historic structures and sites, and in providing opportunities for visitors to learn about and enjoy the colorful heritage of Mineral King. NPS will recognize the Mineral King Living Historic Community and actively participate in the preservation of the historic and cultural resources of the community.

The Mineral King Living Historic Community Proposal
Click here to view the full text of the proposal.

While to date, the Mineral King Living Historic Community proposal has not been included as an option for Mineral King in the General Management Plan, assurances have been made that it will be considered in future discussions of the plan.

Next: Preservation, Mineral King Mandate, Part Four
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