Theodore Roosevelt- The Conservationist President (Public Talk)
Hosted by the Rock River Archaeological Society
The Rock River Archeological Society will be sponsoring a program on President Theodore Roosevelt, often considered the “conservationist president”, March 15, 2017. After becoming president in 1901, Roosevelt used his authority to protect wildlife and public lands by creating the United States Forest Service (USFS) and establishing 150 national forests, 51 federal bird reserves, 4 national game preserves, 5 national parks, and 18 national monuments by enabling the 1906 American Antiquities Act.
The decimation of bison and the eradication of elk, bighorn sheep, deer and other game species was a loss which Roosevelt felt indicative of society’s perception of our natural resources. While many, even today, still consider natural resources inexhaustible, Roosevelt is quoted to have written “We have become great because of the lavish use of our resources. But the time has come to inquire seriously what will happen when our forests are gone, when the coal, the iron, the oil, and the gas are exhausted, when the soils have still further impoverished and washed into the streams, polluting the rivers, denuding the fields and obstructing navigation”.
Facts have just recently been announced that over 300 people visited our National Parks in 2016. Many of our National Parks were first established by Roosevelt as National Monuments. The American Antiquities Act gave the President discretion to “declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic and scientific interest. Since he did not need congressional approval, Roosevelt could establish national monuments much easier than national parks…and he did. Our national parks that were first national monuments are: Petrified Forest (1906), Lassen Peak (now Lassen Volcanic, 1907), Grand Canyon (1908), Pinnacles (1908) and Lewis & Clark Caverns (now a Montana State Park, 1908).
The great preservationist John Muir, concerned over the destruction of western areas, invited President Roosevelt to camp in Yosemite Nation Park. After his trip, Roosevelt remarked “It was like lying in a great solemn cathedral, far vaster and more beautiful than any built by the hand of man”.
Historian, Jim Gibbons, will be giving the program Doing What Needs to be Done: The Life of Theodore Roosevelt. Known as F.D.R, he became the only president to be elected for four terms. He was a man of great adversity who, though stricken with Polio at a young age and confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life, never gave up! He turned our nation’s spirit around during the great depression and his words “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” have remained in history, to be repeated over and over again.
The program will be held on March 15th at the Horicon Marsh Education and Visitor Center, N7725 Hwy 28, Horicon, WI. in the lower level.
The evening is FREE to the Public and refreshments are served after the program where everyone is invited to stay and enjoy the comradeship. For more information on the evening one may call 920-928-6094.