Dean M. Chriss
Sunrise, Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota

Sunrise, Theodore Roosevelt National Park

(Click image to enlarge)

Theodore Roosevelt National Park is a diverse place. The terrain varies from shady cottonwood groves along the edge of the Little Missouri River, to sharply eroded badlands like the one shown in the image above.

President Theodore Roosevelt first came to this place in 1883. He later said "I never would have been President if it had not been for my experiences in North Dakota". In subsequent years he witnessed the destruction of wildlife habitat from overgrazing as some big game species nearly vanished from the area. During his Presidency, Roosevelt established the US Forest Service and signed the 1906 Antiquities Act under which he proclaimed 18 national monuments. He also established 5 national parks, 51 wildlife refuges and 150 national forests. This Republican president told the nation that "We have fallen heirs to the most glorious heritage a people ever received, and each one must do his part if we wish to show that the nation is worthy of its good fortune". Between 2016 and 2020 President Donald Trump removed federal protection from more land than Theodore Roosevelt protected. I wonder what Roosevelt might think about the lack of regard for our environment exhibited by his party today.