A preservation society was founded in 1893 to ensure the protection of the lakes, and the first hotel was built here in 1896. The boundaries of the national park were set in 1951 and the lakes became a major tourist attraction until the civil war (which actually began in Plitvice on 31 March 1991, when rebel Serbs took control of the park headquarters). Croatian police officer Josip Jović became the war’s first victim when he was killed here in the park. The Serbs held the area for the war’s duration, turning the hotels into barracks. The Croatian army retook the park in August 1995, and subsequently the park's facilities have been fully restored.