National Park Service Logo

National Park Service LogoNational Park Service Logo PNG

The National Park logo reflects the importance of preserving unique natural and cultural objects that make up the heritage of the United States. Also, the emblem symbolizes the idea of travel, adventure, and new experiences, as many picturesque and historical places are open for visiting.

National Park Service: Brand overview

Founded:August 25, 1916
Founder:Department of the Interior
Washington, D.C., U.S.
The National Park Service (NPS) was formed in 1916 after American industrialist Stephen Mather noted the lack of an independent organization overseeing Yellowstone National Park. With the help of journalist Robert Sterling Yard, he conducted an advertising campaign and forced the government to create the NPS to preserve untouched wilderness. Later, the agency was given all historical sites managed by the War Department, as well as all national monuments and parks under the control of the Department of Agriculture. In the 1960s, it was decided to make these territories accessible to visitors.

Meaning and History

National Park Service Logo History

The current NPS logo is called Arrowhead, as it has the corresponding shape. But it wasn’t always used. It is known that from 1916 until mid-century, the agency had a round emblem with an image of two branches and a sequoia cone. In 1949, Dudley Bayliss created an emblem for the National Park Service from the letters “N,” “P,” and “S” in the form of a mountain peak. But this icon, which won the contest and brought its author $50, never became official. Historian Aubrey Neasham decided that the NPS needed a graphic symbol in the form of a buffalo, a tree, or an arrowhead. This idea was voiced to architect Herbert Maier, who took on its embodiment, securing the support of his team.

In 1951, the new logo was approved by the United States Department of the Interior and began to be used in brochures a year later. In 1954, minor adjustments were made to it, making the drawing more detailed and adding a serrated edge. In 1955, this version first appeared on uniforms, and ten years later, the Arrowhead symbol became a patented trademark.

The agency tried to conduct a large-scale rebranding in the late 1960s. The firm Chermayeff & Geismar Associates created an emblem for it in the form of three triangles outlined by three circles. They were meant to represent the protection of trees and mountains. But the NPS staff rejected the new design and returned to the 1951 Arrowhead. In 2014, the logo was revised: it got a relief of wavy stripes, and some details were changed.

What is National Park?

The National Park Service, also known as NPS, is a federal agency within the United States Department of the Interior and is directly responsible to the Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks. Its task is to take care of protected territories in the United States, such as recreational areas, historical sites, and natural and cultural monuments. It not only protects these resources but also provides access to them.


National Park Service Logo 1951

1952 – 1968

National Park Service Logo 1952

1968 – 2000

National Park Service Logo 1968

2000 – today

National Park Service Logo

The main symbol of the National Park Service consists of several elements.

  • The arrowhead embodies the agency’s connection with the culture and historical traditions of the indigenous peoples of America. Also, it looks like a pointer that sets the direction of movement. This hints that the NPS is constantly striving for development.
  • The bison represents the wild nature of the United States and is a reference to the U.S. Department of the Interior’s seal. It was considered a sacred animal by many tribes because it was a source of meat, fur, and bones. In addition, the bison symbolizes endurance and strength – qualities that correspond to the concept of the National Park Service. It disappeared from many regions of North America but was restored thanks to conservation organizations.
  • The sequoia embodies vegetation. These majestic trees live for several millennia under favorable conditions and reach a height of more than 100 meters. The quality of the ecosystem can judge their condition. The sequoia on the emblem hints that protecting natural resources is a long-term mission that requires constant efforts.
  • Snow-capped mountain peaks can be seen in many US national parks. They represent grandiose landscapes. And the tree-covered valley at the foot of the mountains is a symbol of pristine pure nature.

Font and Colors

National Park Service Emblem

At the top of the logo is the phrase “NATIONAL PARK SERVICE,” divided into three lines with center alignment. It consists of uppercase bold letters without serifs. Similar fonts include Quebec Serial Black by SoftMaker and DelargoDTPro Bold by DTP Types.

The inscription and some elements are white. For example, the bison and the mountain peak, which are depicted using negative space. Trees and grass are dark green, and all the remaining space is painted in different shades of brown.

National Park Service Symbol

National Park Service color codes

Ruddy BrownHex color:#c56c39
RGB:197 108 57
CMYK:0 45 71 23
Pantone:PMS 7578 C
Myrtle GreenHex color:#2d4b1e
RGB:45 75 30
CMYK:40 0 60 71
Pantone:PMS 357 C