There were several expeditions out to the area. Upon their return, various members of the expedition wrote articles about the upper Yellowstone and attracted considerable national attention to the wonders they had seen. A man named Langford went around and gave many species on this issue. In audience on day was Hayden, who was head of the U.S. Geological Survey of the Territories, was in the audience. Out of this contact between Langford and Hayden were sown the seeds of the famous Hayden Survey of Yellowstone in 1871, the most productive, definitive and elaborate of all Yellowstone expeditions.
Hayden assembled a large and talented scientific party of geologists, zoologists, botanists and a variety of others including photographer William H. Jackson and artist Thomas Moran. His highly successful expedition gathered hundreds of specimens in addition to producing a wealth of notes, photographs and artistic sketches, and confirmed the wonders of Yellowstone – up to that time largely unverified.
In Washington, Hayden set about compiling his findings in an official report that joined others in urging Congress to set aside the Yellowstone region as America’s first national park. That was accomplished just a few short months later when, in March 1872, President Ulysses Grant signed into law an act creating Yellowstone National Park.
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