On display at Bull Run Regional Park
Teddy Roosevelt was our greatest conservation President. He created the National Park System, National Forests and the National Wildlife Refuge System. In all,
"In utilizing and conserving the natural resources of the Nation, the one characteristic more essential than any other is foresight.... The conservation of our natural resources and their proper use constitute the fundamental problem which underlies almost every other problem of our national life."
Address to the National Editorial Association,
The Outlook, April 20, 1912
"Birds should be saved for utilitarian reasons; and, moreover, they should be saved because of reasons unconnected with dollars and cents. A grove of giant redwoods or sequoias should be kept just as we keep a great and beautiful cathedral. The extermination of the passenger-pigeon meant that mankind was just so much poorer .... And to lose the chance to see frigate-birds soaring in circles above the storm, or a file of pelicans winging their way homeward across the crimson afterglow of the sunset, or a myriad of terns flashing in the bright light of midday as they hover in a shifting maze above the beach-why, the loss is like the loss of a gzlilery of the masterpieces of the artists of old time."
A Book-Lover's Holidays in the Open (1916).
TR came to conservation first as a lover of the outdoors.
[Roosevelt game trophies are on loan from the Smithsonian Institute]