About This Study

This study offers a complete compilation of all presidential uses of the Antiquities Act from 1906 to the present. The compilation can be browsed by year or by president, using the sections labelled “The Monuments” or “The Presidents.”

This study also offers links to searchable, online, full-text proclamation documents. Proclamation document links will be added as new records become available.

At this time, national monument-related documents from the U.S. Government Printing Office include the administrations of Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama (approximately 1994 to the near-present). The source for these documents is here

The Federal Register 1994 – 2015

For those able to download and search large files, a collection of the United States Statutes at Large, dating from 1951 to 2011, is available at

The United States Statutes at Large 1951 – 2011

Other documents can be found via a wide variety of sources, including the Library of Congress and the UCSB American Presidency Project. For examples of these types of documents, see

The Library of Congress American Memory Historical Collections

University of California Santa Barbara American Presidency Project

Some of these documents are include in these web site pages as a reference aid for those seeking alternate primary document sources. The full suite of pre-Clinton proclamations will be added once they are made available in a searchable, verifiable, online format from the U.S. Government Printing Office.

A Non-Technical Discussion of Online Document Sources

A URL (uniform resource locator, or, more commonly, a web address) is designed to help you (and your computer) find a document. A DOI (digital object identifier) is designed to help you find a document even years after that document was first made available as an online resource, and even if that document’s original URL has changed during this period. A digital signature (or “digital signature technology”) is designed to help you assess the credibility of the document, or, as the U.S. Government Printing Office states:

“The visible digital signatures on online PDF documents serve the same purpose as handwritten signatures or traditional wax seals on printed documents. A digital signature, viewed through the GPO Seal of Authenticity, verifies document integrity and authenticity on GPO online Federal documents, at no cost to the customer.”

Source: U.S. Government Printing Office Authentication

For this particular web resource, the use of PDFs (Portable Document Format by Adobe Acrobat/Adobe Systems) is essentially mandatory. The GPO (U.S. Government Printing Office) currently provides presidential proclamations in the PDF format, and the PDF format is currently widely used and accepted as a viable online, searchable source format for such documents. For information about Adobe Acrobat (or Reader), which is a part of the Adobe software world, please follow the ubiquitous links to free Adobe downloads included on many government web sites (This is not a plug for Adobe, just a recognition of their usefulness!). This use of PDFs may change over the years, much like the changes from floppy disks to zip drives to USB drives. If it does, this web site will include changes and updates as a way to keep these original national monument documents available to the broadest number of users. In the meantime, documents showing presidential use of the Antiquities Act are included here, in PDF formats.

Why Online?

I have spent many hours at my nearest research library, looking through available volumes of the U.S. Statutes at Large. This library is a “selective depository library” within the Federal Depository Library Program, which, in this case, means that not all government document collections are necessarily available for review. In fact, at this library, the collection of U.S. Statutes at Large begins in the late-1920s and ends with the early 2000s. The collection has recently been relocated and may, according to the librarians, be sent to another repository in the near future. I also have enjoyed many hours making hand-written notes regarding presidential use of the Antiquities Act at the next nearest research library, which does have a complete collection of the U.S. Statutes at Large volumes, but which is a three hundred mile round trip from my office. Availability of presidential proclamations via the U.S. Statutes at Large seemed much more secure at this source, until I arrived one day to find the library closed because a water pipe had ruptured, flooding the—you guessed it—government document’s section! The U.S. Statutes at Large were apparently unharmed by this incident, but access to them was extremely limited. Ultimately, an online resource seemed like a good idea, for those who were geographically far from a library, as well as for those who needed access to another complete, searchable source for such material immediately, floods, snowstorms, and other obstacles notwithstanding. Hopefully, upon completion, this web site will help.

Finally, while online resources can be very useful, a personal visit to your nearest/favorite national monument is always recommended!


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