The Civil War era has figured prominently in land conservation in the Heart of Maryland. Public lands like Antietam and Monocacy National Battlefields and South Mountain State Battlefield are enhanced by the extraordinary successes in conserving private lands around them. Among many Civil War enthusiasts, Antietam is prized as one of the best preserved battlefield landscapes, thanks in part to private landowners who have placed permanent easements on their land. The Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area became certified as part of the Maryland Heritage Areas Program in 2006. It is an independent nonprofit organization comprised of representatives of local government units, state and national parks, private organizations and businesses, and individuals from Washington, Frederick, and Carroll counties. When you visit the HCWHA website, be sure to check out the interactive map of sites and visitor centers.