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By Mark W. T. Harvey

Dinosaur nationwide Monument straddles the Utah-Colorado border close to Wyoming. It attracted little recognition and few viewers till plans to block the golf green River and flood picturesque Echo Park Valley sparked public competition within the early Fifties. Echo Park Dam might have threatened a part of this nationwide monument, a prospect that alarmed the nationwide Park carrier. In July 1950 the author Bernard DeVoto released his essay,"Shall We allow them to damage Our nationwide Parks?" within the "Saturday night submit" and spurred national competition. quickly the Sierra membership, the desolate tract Society, and different agencies embraced preservind Echo Park. by means of the spring of 1956 the coalition of barren region lovers and conservation firms had confronted down the dam's proponents and strength Congress to cancel its development. As Professor Harvey makes transparent, the conflict to save lots of Echo Park marked the 1st significant conflict among preservationists and builders after global warfare II, a clash that replays itself within the West with larger depth every one decade.

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Additional resources for A Symbol of Wilderness: Echo Park and the American Conservation Movement

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Logging firms, resort developers, and other interests also sought to exploit resources in primitive and roadless areas in national forests in Minnesota and California as well, prompting the Wilderness Society and its allies to press for added protection of such areas. Meanwhile, a ''landgrab'' movement arose in Wyoming, Nevada and other ranching states, adding to conservationists' fears about the public lands in the West and the new pressures being exerted upon them. All of this caused growing anxieties among a gamut of organizations who became determined to take a strong stand against the Bureau of Reclamation's proposal to dam the Green River in Dinosaur National Monument.

The three-man crew survived uninjured, but two thousand pounds of provisions and weapons were lost. Appropriately, Powell and his men dubbed the rapid Disaster Falls, and it remains to this day one of the most exciting among many rapids on the Green River in Dinosaur National Monument. 14 On June 18, 1869, Powell rested his crew on a small beach located at the confluence of the Green and Yampa rivers. Here was a perfect site to recuperate. Away from Lodore's rapids, the men relaxed in the grass beneath the cool shade of box elder trees.

If Dinosaur had been one of the better-known parks, such as Yellowstone or the Grand Canyon, this controversy might not ever have come about. But Dinosaur? What did it matter if a dam were built there? Who cared about a few old fossils? The problem of having an uncertain purpose and a hazy public identity began in 1915. In that year, President Woodrow Wilson, under authority of the Antiquities Act, proclaimed the new monu- Page 7 ment around eighty acres of public domain in northeast Utah in order to protect a bed of well-preserved dinosaur skeletons.

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