Today in BNSF history, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt visited the Two Medicine Valley in Glacier National Park on August 5, 1934. When FDR gave a national radio address from the park, he expressed the wish that “every American, old and young, could have been with me today.” As one of FDR’s greatest passions, the preservation of America’s land through national parks is one of the most influential legacies of his presidency.
“There is nothing so American as our national parks,” FDR said. “The scenery and wild life are native. The fundamental idea behind the parks is native. It is, in brief, that the country belongs to the people, that it is in the process of making for the enrichment of the lives of all of us. The parks stand as the outward symbol of this great human principle.”
BNSF predecessor railroad Great Northern Railway played a major role in the development of Glacier Park, building trails, roads and hotels to promote tourism to the park, with the railroad providing transportation.