Harry S. Truman photo

Proclamation 2961—Addition of Devil's Hole, Nevada, to Death Valley National Monument—California and Nevada

January 17, 1952

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Whereas by Proclamation No. 2028 of February 11, 1933 (47 Stat. 2554), certain lands in California known as Death Valley were set aside and reserved as the Death Valley National Monument for the preservation of the unusual features of scenic, scientific, and educational interest therein contained; and by Proclamation No. 2228 of March 26, 1937 (50 Stat. 1823), the said monument was enlarged by adding thereto certain contiguous lands in California and Nevada; and

Whereas there is located outside the boundaries of the said monument but in the vicinity thereof a forty-acre tract of public land in Nevada containing a remarkable underground pool known as Devil's Hole; and

Whereas the said pool is a unique subsurface remnant of the prehistoric chain of lakes which in Pleistocene times formed the Death Valley Lake System, and is unusual among caverns in that it is a solution area in distinctly striated limestone, while also owing its formation in part to fault action; and

Whereas the geologic evidence that this subterranean pool is an integral part of the hydrographic history of the Death Valley region is further confirmed by the presence in this pool of a peculiar race of desert fish, and zoologists have demonstrated that this race of fish, which is found nowhere else in the world, evolved only after the gradual drying up of the Death Valley Lake System isolated this fish population from the original ancestral stock that in Pleistocene times was common to the entire region; and

Whereas the said pool is of such outstanding scientific importance that it should be given special protection, and such protection can be best afforded by making the said forty-acre tract containing the pool a part of the said monument:

Now, Therefore, I, Harry S. Truman, President of the United States of America, under and by virtue of the authority vested in me by section 2 of the act of June 8, 1906, 34 Stat. 225 (16 U.S.C. 431), do proclaim that, subject to the provisions of the act of Congress approved June 13, 1933, 48 Stat. 139 (16 U.S.C. 447), and to all valid existing rights, the following-described tract of land in Nevada is hereby added to and reserved as a part of the Death Valley national Monument, as a detached unit thereof:


T. 17 S., R. 50 E.,

Sec. 36 SW ¼ SE ¼.

Warning is hereby expressly given to all unauthorized persons not to appropriate, injure, destroy, or remove any feature of this addition to the said monument and not to locate or settle on any of the lands thereof.

The Director of the national Park Service, under the direction of the Secretary of the Interior, shall have the supervision, management, and control of the lands hereby added to the said monument as provided in the act of Congress entitled "An Act to establish a national Park Service, and for other purposes", approved August 25, 1916 (39 Stat. 535; 16 U.S.C. 1-3), and acts supplementary thereto or amendatory thereof.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States of America to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington this 17th day of January in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and fifty-two, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred and seventy-sixth.

Signature of Harry S. Truman


By the President:


Secretary of State.

Harry S. Truman, Proclamation 2961—Addition of Devil's Hole, Nevada, to Death Valley National Monument—California and Nevada Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/287467

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