Historic preservation is an endeavor that seeks to preserve, conserve and protect buildings, objects, landscapes or other artifacts of historical significance. Other names for the discipline or sub-disciplines include urban conservation, landscape preservation, built environment conservation, built heritage conservation, object conservation, and immovable object conservation; within English-speaking countries "historic preservation" is generally used by speakers in the United States to refer to what is known in other dialects as "heritage conservation" or "heritage preservation". As such, this article focuses on the particular movement and regulatory regime that evolved under that term in the United States.
As used by practitioners of the endeavor, "historic preservation" tends to refer to the preservation of the built environment, and not to preservation of, for example, primeval forests or wilderness.
More information can be found on the Wikipedia page , which gives details of the history and organisations.