The History Behind Earth Day
In the beginning… Problems with the environment have been known long before Earth Day was even a thought. Evidence of early destruction to the environment is available through images at the Library of Congress American Memory Collection website, www.memory.loc.gov
Click on the links below to view documents from the Library of Congress’s American Memory Collection that illustrate the long history of environmental problems which eventually led to the development of Earth Day. river pollution sanitation acid rain
“No individual was so completely and prominently identified with the American conservationmovement in this era as Gifford Pinchot, who made it his mission to establish the permanently sustainable use of the nation's natural resources on a foundation of rational and integrated public ownership and management.” Pinchot, Gifford, The Fight for Conservation, 1910, Doubleday, NY, www.memory.loc.gov Fight for Conservation document
In 1928, President Roosevelt became increasingly concerned with the amount of destruction occurring on public and private land. He proposed many ideas to preserve the natural beauty of the United States. One being the Roosevelt dam. images and videos of Roosevelt's effort for conservation
Then cameSenator Nelson in the 1960’s who thought that if everyone could focus on the environmental problems that related to the general public and bring out the students anti-war energy, he could get people to listen and take notice of Earth Day.
At a Seattle conference in September of 1969, Senator Nelson announced that in the spring of 1970, there would be a demonstration for the environment and invited everyone to participate.
On April 22, 1970, the first Earth Day was held. People all over the country made promises to help the environment. Everyone got involved and since then, Earth Day has spread all over the planet. People all over the world know that there are problems we need to work on and this is our special day to look at the planet and see what needs changing.
Works cited http://memory.loc.gov http://earthday.envirolink.org/history.html http://www.kidsdomain.com/holiday/earthday/history.html http://earthday.wilderness.org/history/