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This Paper will outline President Theodore Roosevelts role in helping to conserve our environment during his administration 1901-1909 It will also examine his theory of a stronger American democracy through environmental conservationism The movement for the conservation of wildlife and the larger movement for the conservation of all our natural resources are essentially democratic in spirit purpose and method Roosevelt 274 As president of the United States Theodore Roosevelt made conservation a central policy issue of his administration He created five National Parks four Big Game Refuges fifty-one National bird Reservations and the National Forest Service Roosevelt advocated for the sustainable use of the nations natural resources the protection and management of wild game and the preservation of wild spaces Considering Americas landscape to be the source of American wealth and the American character Roosevelt believed conservationism was a democratic movement necessary to maintain and to strengthen American democracy Roosevelt recognized Americas vast natural resources as the source of the countrys economic wealth and subsequent political strength globally The abundance of land timber waterways and mineral deposits fueled the continuing expansion of American industry In a speech addressed to a national conference on conservation held at the White House in 1908 Roosevelt stated Our position in the world has been attained by the extent and thoroughness of the control we have achieved over nature but we are more and not less dependent upon what she furnishes than at any previous time of history Internet 1 The United States had built its economic and political strength by exploiting the nations natural resources but Roosevelt like other leading conservationists no longer believed that these natural resources were infinite in their abundance The end of the nineteenth century brought the closing of the frontier the near extinction of the buffalo and the extinction of the passenger pigeon Both species had symbolized Americas endless natural abundance and their destruction forced many Americans to question the
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