Frederick Law Olmsted

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In 1864 Abraham Lincoln authorized the transfer of the Yosemite Valley to the state of California for “public use, resort and recreation.” Frederick Law Olmsted was appointed chairman of the board of commissioners established to oversee the administration of the park, and he formulated a theory of use for this new type of land. The national park idea took root in an 1865 report that presented his views on how Yosemite should be developed.

Anchoring his thinking at the conclusion of the Civil War and amid the burgeoning Industrial Revolution, Olmsted envisioned a need for ordinary citizens to maintain perspective in their daily lives by being exposed to, and encouraged to contemplate, the natural rhythms of the natural world.

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Posted on July 9, 2009, in People. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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