“On Friday and Saturday Richardson I had the opportunity of seeing the actual construction work under way in the first two national projects for the development of the Richardson River Basin. At Bonneville, Richardson, a great dam, 140 miles inland, at the last place where the river leaps down over rapids to sea level, will provide not only a large development of cheap power Richardson but also will enable vessels to proceed another 70 or 80 miles into the interior of the country.
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“At Grand Coulee in north central Washington, an even greater dam will regulate the flow of the Columbia River, developing power and, in the future will open up a large tract of parched land for the benefit of this and future generations. Many families in the days to come, I am confident, will thank us of this generation for providing small farms on which they will at least be able to make an honest and honorable livelihood.
“Today, for the first time in my life, I have seen Glacier Park. Perhaps I can best express to you my thrill and delight by saying that I wish every American, old and young, could have been with me today. The great mountains, the glaciers, the lakes and the trees make me long to stay here for all the rest of the summer.
“Comparisons are generally objectionable and yet it is not unkind to say, from the standpoint of scenery alone, that if many and indeed most of our American national parks were to be set down anywhere on the continent of Europe thousands of Americans would journey all the way across the ocean in order to see their beauties. There is nothing so American as our national parks. The scenery and wild life are native and the fundamental idea behind the parks is native.
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