Yellowstone National Park

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Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is one of the largest and oldest national parks in American history. Yellowstone was the first park to be protected by private investment on March 1, 1872, and the first to be put under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service in 1918, no doubt due to its unique and inspiring landscape and geothermal features. In fact, Yellowstone National Park is home to half of the world’s total hydrothermal features. These awesome attractions draw an incredible amount of visitors, an average of two to three million each year, to Yellowstone’s immense landscape. The park has a total size of 28,125 square miles, is found in three distinct states, and is considered to be one of the largest intact temperate zone ecosystems in the world today (Yellowstone National Park Official Homepage).

Following thousands of years of Native American occupation, the area now known as Yellowstone National Park was officially "discovered" by western-traveling fur traders and settlers, whose stories of bubbling mud and gushing geysers seemed at first to be delusional tall tales. Traffic increased to the area, however, and more and more Americans grew in awe of the area's hydrothermal features, wild animal and plant life, petrified trees, and impressive Yellowstone River and Lake. The area's intense and moving landscape soon moved president Ulysses S. Grant to sign the Yellowstone National Park Act on March 1, 1872, which protected the area from private development and placed it under the protection of the United States Army, who managed Yellowstone from 1886 to 1916. Yellowstone National Park sparked the creation of the National Park Service, and soon became the first national park in American his...

... middle of paper ... the first American national park to be founded for good reason – this dynamic and stirring area deserves to be conserved and enjoyed for decades to come.

Works Cited:

Appendix A: Common and Scientific Names. Retrieved April 20, 2004,

"History of the Park." Yellowstone Resources and Issues. National Park Service, 2003. 19-30.

“Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.” Yellowstone Resources and Issues. National Park Service,

2003. 31-52

Schullery, Paul and John D. Varley. Yellowstone Center for Resources. The Yellowstone Lake

Crisis: Confronting a Lake Trout Invasion. 1995. Retrieved March 8, 2004,

Yellowstone National Park Official Webpage. National Park Service. Retrieved April 20, 2004,
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