Theodore Roosevelt maintained a life-long commitment to preserving natural resources. He played a key role in the creation or enlargement of 150 national forests, the creation of 51 federal bird refuges, four national game preserves, six national parks, and 18 national monuments.
The Antiquities Act of 1906 gave either the President or Congress authority to set aside historic landmarks and other objects of historic and scientific interest, protecting them from looting and destruction. President Roosevelt used the Act to designate many sites, including the Grand Canyon, as national monuments.
John Graham Bell (1812-1889) was the taxidermist from Tappan, New York, who taught young Theodore Roosevelt how to preserve animals for collection and display and who may have first mentioned to him the bison roaming the Dakota prairies.
The Boone and Crockett Club was the brainchild of Theodore Roosevelt and George Bird Grinnell, the editor of the influential magazine Forest and Stream.
John Burroughs was one of several naturalists whom Theodore Roosevelt knew because of his role in the evolving conservation movement of the early twentieth century.
George Bird Grinnell was raised in New York where his family lived for a time on the former estate of John James Audubon.
Gifford Pinchot promoted conservationism—the efficient management of natural resources by trained professionals. He was the first head of the U.S. Forest Service, appointed by President Theodore Roosevelt.