This week examines the development of
the national parks in our region and nationally. The Lecture (approximately
61 minutes) by Jeff Wiltse addresses the reasons for the conservation
movement and the way it developed in the Northwest. Maps & Cityscapes presents
maps that detail the National Parks, Forests, and Monuments as well as
Indian reservations in our region. You will also find a state by
state list of National Parks, Forests, and Monuments in the Northwest,
noting the year established.
Tribal Perspectives includes primary documents
and commentary that raise the issue of whose lands were conserved for the Nation? People
and the Humanities presents a biography of conservationist George Bird
Grinnell, the discussion of the creation myth surrounding Yellowstone National
Park and the advertising campaigns by the Great Northern Railroad. The Research section,
in addition to our top books and films, asks you to consider the reality of what
was happening to the rest of the land, while the most beautiful lands were acquired
Assignment suggestions for this week’s content include:
- How have conservation movements changed the way we look at the value
of land? What worth does conserved land have? Have the
ideas of the value of untilled and untrammeled land changed over the
- Consider the link between business and conservation. Do the
goals of business always conflict with the goals of conservationists
or can they match on any level?
- How do we decide who should judge what a piece of land is good for? Have
other countries or other parts of the United States dealt with conflicting
land claims differently? Were their solutions more or less successful
than the solutions implemented here?
- How do we tell our national/regional story through biographies? Thoughtful
and thorough readers will note that the biography of Grinnell is contrasted
by information presented elsewhere on these pages. Whose story
dominates and why? How can students be encouraged to consider
multiple viewpoints and to become comfortable with paradox and the
many shades of grey?
Northern Pacific Railroad's Yellowstone "Wonderland" Advertising Campaign