Saving History Saturday: Growing Youth Involvement in Preservation

For those who follow the social media accounts of the American Battlefield Trust, you may have seen the recent posts featuring their Youth Leadership Team (YLT). Made up of ten motivated, preservation-minded high school students from across the country, the YLT  is responsible for helping preserve the history in their own communities. On top of that, they help to spread the word of the Trust’s mission to preserve battlefields of the American Revolutionary War, War of 1812, and the Civil War.

The American Battlefield Trust’s Youth Leadership Team. Courtesy of the American Battlefield Trust.

While many people are concerned that youth largely do not care about historic preservation, the American Battlefield Trust’s YLT is certainly proving that there are many students out there who are actively trying to save the past.

All ten members of the YLT are from varying regions of the United States, many of which have little to no Revolutionary War, War of 1812, or Civil War history. However, these same students acknowledge the diverse and unique histories of their areas and hope to teach the next generation about local stories. They accomplish this through community projects they must complete during the year. One student is creating fundraisers to support local battlefield preservation in the Loudoun Valley (VA), while another is developing podcasts about the Battle of King’s Mountain near his hometown in South Carolina. Each project aims to promote preservation and education – two major pillars of the Trust.

With the Trust’s work to inspire the next generation of preservationists, do you know of any organizations also working with youth? Please share them below in the comments and let us know of the work they are doing.

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