Happy Birthday, Yosemite!
This year marks Yosemite National Park's sesquicentennial -- 150 years old!
Bob was born and raised in the park because his dad worked for Curry Company and his mom worked at the hospital in the park, so of course, Yosemite is pretty important to him.
On June 30, 1864, Exactly 150 years ago today, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Yosemite Land Grant, which protected Yosemite and the Mariposa Grove there, and eventually led to the National Park system. This morning at 10:00, there was a ceremony at Mariposa Grove, in the midst of the more than 500 giant Sequoias there, to commemorate this incredible occasion.
Of course, Bob and I had to go.
We both took the day off from work, and got up really early to drive up, as we knew they were expecting a large crowd. We had to park at Goat Meadows, right before the south park entrance, as they weren't allowing cars up to the grove; there would be too many people there. We took a bus from there to Mariposa Grove. Of course, it was a little weird for Bob to do such a "tourist" think in Yosemite.
Les James and Bill Tucker being greeted by some of the
rangers, and finding their reserved seats prior to the ceremony.
Les during the blessing; this photo was taken by
Craig Kohlruss, Associated Press.
Photo Credit: Craig Kohlruss, AP
It was very cool to be there for such a momentous occasion.
Lincoln never had the chance to visit Yosemite, and signed the grant during the Civil War, after seeing pictures like the one below.
We should all be thankful he did.