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Yosemite National Park

National parks centennial offers lots to do, see

National parks centennial offers lots to do, see

It was a trickle that started during Abraham Lincoln's presidency — a bill to protect the wild beauty of Yosemite in California from developers, homesteaders and industrialists.

That was followed by legislation to protect Yellowstone in Wyoming, coming as railroads and photographs in newspapers were starting to connect Americans to the nation's breathtaking wonders.

Then a spate of bills under President (and conservationist) Theodore Roosevelt to safeguard monuments, forests, game reserves and parks.

And on Aug. 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson opened the floodgates, establishing the National Park Service — at the time it encompassed 14 parks, 21...