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Name: Jim Macdonald
Location: Bozeman, MT, United States

Hi, my name is Jim Macdonald, and I have an odd assortment of interests. In no particular order, I love Yellowstone, I am an anti-authoritarian activist and organizer who just moved from Washington, DC to Bozeman, and I have a background in philosophy, having taught at the college level. My blog has a lot more links to my writing and my other Web sites. In Jim's Eclectic World, I try to give a holistic view of my many interests. Often, all three passions show themselves interweaving in the very same blog. Anyhow, I think it's a little different. But, that's me. I'm not so much out there, but taken together, I'm a little unusual.

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    Saturday, August 04, 2007

    Tell Bush that Benjamin Harrison did not establish Yellowstone National Park in 1891!

    As a prelude to an upcoming essay on myths and Yellowstone, I have to put this in the "Are you kidding me?" department. I just found this error on the White House's Web site, one that's been there uncorrected since September 2004. You can find it here.

    In 1891, President Harrison established what is now known as Yellowstone National Park. What was the park's original name??
    Yellowstone Conservation Area
    Wyoming National Land
    Yellowstone Timberland Reserve
    Old Faithful Park
    The Land of the Buffalo

    The correct answer, according to the White House, is "Yellowstone Timberland Reserve."

    Yikes. Yellowstone National Park was established in 1872 when Grant was President. It is true that the act that founds it does not name it; however, by 1883, legislation passed clearly refers to it as Yellowstone National Park. From what I've read in Aubrey Haines, the park got its name from correspondences between the first superintendent Nathaniel Pitt Langford and the Secretary of the Interior (but don't quote me on that! Please look it up - don't blame me for starting rumors). The Yellowstone Park Timberland Reserve was established in 1891 while Benjamin Harrison was president, but that reserve ultimately (outside of what's now Grand Teton National Park and a couple border adjustments) became national forest land.

    What a strange error! And, here you all thought Teddy Roosevelt founded Yellowstone! You were wrong, but this is even more bizarre.


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