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Nicodemus visitation up sharply


NICODEMUS -- More than 3,500 people visited the Nicodemus National Historic site last year, spending money in area communities.

That's an increase from the 2,681 visitors in 2011 the National Park Service said spent more than $133,000 in area communities, enough to support two jobs in the region.

Virtually all of the money directly attributable to the historic site is spent by non-residents.

Nicodemus, in eastern Graham County, is the only remaining black settlement west of the Mississippi River.

The Nicodemus contribution is all part of a $30 billion effect the National Park Service has on the nation, enough to create 252,000 jobs.

"Nicodemus National Historic Site is a wonderful place to learn about America's story," said park superintendent Angela Wetz. "We attract visitors from across the U.S. and around the world who come here to experience the park and then spend time and money enjoying the services provided by our neighboring communities and getting to know this amazing part of the country."

Wetz is new to the Nicodemus area, taking over as superintendent in mid-January.

Situated along U.S. Highway 24, the visitors center in the township hall is open daily.