Baylor University is a private Christian university in Waco, Texas. Chartered in 1845 by the last Congress of the Republic of Texas, it is one of the oldest continuously operating universities in Texas and one of the first educational institutions west of the Mississippi River in the United States. Located on the banks of the Brazos River next to I-35, between the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and Austin, the university's 1,000-acre campus is the largest Baptist university campus in the world. Baylor University's athletic teams, known as the Bears, participate in 19 intercollegiate sports; the university is a member of the Big 12 Conference in the NCAA Division I. It is affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas. In 1841, 35 delegates to the Union Baptist Association meeting voted to adopt the suggestion of Rev. William Milton Tryon and R. E. B. Baylor to establish a Baptist university in Texas an independent republic. Baylor, a Texas district judge and onetime U. S. Congressman and soldier from Alabama, became the school's namesake.
Some at first wished to name the new university "San Jacinto" to recognize the victory which enabled the Texans to become an independent nation before the final vote of the Congress, the petitioners requested the university be named in honor of Judge R. E. B. Baylor. In the fall of 1844, the Texas Baptist Education Society petitioned the Congress of the Republic of Texas to charter a Baptist university. Republic President Anson Jones signed the Act of Congress on February 1, 1845 establishing Baylor University; the founders built the original university campus in Texas. Rev. James Huckins, the first Southern Baptist missionary to Texas, was Baylor's first full-time fundraiser, he is considered the third founding father of the university. Although these three men are credited as being the founders of the university, many others worked to see the first university established in Texas and thus they were awarded Baylor's Founders Medal; the noted Texas revolutionary war leader and hero Sam Houston gave the first $5,000 donation to start the university.
In 1854, Houston was baptized by the Rev. Rufus Columbus Burleson, future Baylor President, in the Brazos River. During the 1846 school year Baylor leaders would begin including chapel as part of the Baylor educational experience; the tradition has been a part of the life of students for over 160 years. In 1849, R. E. B. Baylor and Abner S. Lipscomb of the Texas Supreme Court began teaching classes in the "science of law," making Baylor the first in Texas and the second university west of the Mississippi to teach law. During this time Stephen Decatur Rowe would earn the first degree awarded by Baylor, he would be followed by the first female graduate, Mary Kavanaugh Gentry, in 1855. In 1851, Baylor's second president Rufus Columbus Burleson decided to separate the students by sex, making the Baylor Female College an independent and separate institution. Baylor University became an all-male institution. During this time, Baylor thrived as the only university west of the Mississippi offering instruction in law and medicine.
At the time a Baylor education cost around $8–$15 per term for tuition. And many of the early leaders of the Republic of Texas, such as Sam Houston, would send their children to Baylor to be educated; some of those early students were Temple Lea Houston, son of President Sam Houston, a famous western gun-fighter and attorney. For the first half of the American Civil War, the Baylor president was George Washington Baines, maternal great-grandfather of the future U. S. President, Lyndon B. Johnson, he worked vigorously to sustain the university during the Civil War, when male students left their studies to enlist in the Confederate Army. Following the war, the city of Independence declined caused by the rise of neighboring cities being serviced by the Santa Fe Railroad; because Independence lacked a railroad line, university fathers began searching for a location to build a new campus. Beginning in 1885, Baylor University moved to a growing town on the railroad line, it merged with a local college called Waco University.
At the time, Rufus Burleson, Baylor's second president, was serving as the local college's president. That same year, the Baylor Female College was moved to a new location, Texas, it became known as the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. A Baylor College Park still exists in Independence in memory of the college's history there. Around 1887, Baylor University became coeducational again. In 1900, three physicians founded the University of Dallas Medical Department in Dallas, although a university by that name did not exist. In 1903, Baylor University acquired the medical school, which became known as the Baylor College of Medicine, while remaining in Dallas. In 1943, Dallas civic leaders offered to build larger facilities for the university in a new medical center if the College of Medicine would surrender its denominational alliances with the Baptist state convention; the Baylor administration refused the offer and, with funding from the M. D. Anderson Foundation and others, moved the College of Medicine to Houston.
In 1969, the Baylor College of Medicine became technically independent from Baylor University. The two institutions still maintain strong links and Baylor still elects around 25 percent of the medical school's regents, they share academic links and combine in research efforts. During World War II, Baylor was one of 131 colleges and universities nationally that took part in the V-12 Navy College Training Program which offered students a path to a Navy commission; the university first admitted black
Paleontology or palaeontology is the scientific study of life that existed prior to, sometimes including, the start of the Holocene Epoch. It includes the study of fossils to determine organisms' evolution and interactions with each other and their environments. Paleontological observations have been documented as far back as the 5th century BC; the science became established in the 18th century as a result of Georges Cuvier's work on comparative anatomy, developed in the 19th century. The term itself originates from Greek παλαιός, palaios, "old, ancient", ὄν, on, "being, creature" and λόγος, logos, "speech, study". Paleontology lies on the border between biology and geology, but differs from archaeology in that it excludes the study of anatomically modern humans, it now uses techniques drawn from a wide range of sciences, including biochemistry and engineering. Use of all these techniques has enabled paleontologists to discover much of the evolutionary history of life all the way back to when Earth became capable of supporting life, about 3.8 billion years ago.
As knowledge has increased, paleontology has developed specialised sub-divisions, some of which focus on different types of fossil organisms while others study ecology and environmental history, such as ancient climates. Body fossils and trace fossils are the principal types of evidence about ancient life, geochemical evidence has helped to decipher the evolution of life before there were organisms large enough to leave body fossils. Estimating the dates of these remains is essential but difficult: sometimes adjacent rock layers allow radiometric dating, which provides absolute dates that are accurate to within 0.5%, but more paleontologists have to rely on relative dating by solving the "jigsaw puzzles" of biostratigraphy. Classifying ancient organisms is difficult, as many do not fit well into the Linnaean taxonomy classifying living organisms, paleontologists more use cladistics to draw up evolutionary "family trees"; the final quarter of the 20th century saw the development of molecular phylogenetics, which investigates how organisms are related by measuring the similarity of the DNA in their genomes.
Molecular phylogenetics has been used to estimate the dates when species diverged, but there is controversy about the reliability of the molecular clock on which such estimates depend. The simplest definition of paleontology is "the study of ancient life"; the field seeks information about several aspects of past organisms: "their identity and origin, their environment and evolution, what they can tell us about the Earth's organic and inorganic past". Paleontology is one of the historical sciences, along with archaeology, astronomy, cosmology and history itself: it aims to describe phenomena of the past and reconstruct their causes. Hence it has three main elements: description of past phenomena; when trying to explain the past and other historical scientists construct a set of hypotheses about the causes and look for a smoking gun, a piece of evidence that accords with one hypothesis over the others. Sometimes the smoking gun is discovered by a fortunate accident during other research. For example, the discovery by Luis and Walter Alvarez of iridium, a extra-terrestrial metal, in the Cretaceous–Tertiary boundary layer made asteroid impact the most favored explanation for the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, although the contribution of volcanism continues to be debated.
The other main type of science is experimental science, said to work by conducting experiments to disprove hypotheses about the workings and causes of natural phenomena. This approach cannot prove a hypothesis, since some experiment may disprove it, but the accumulation of failures to disprove is compelling evidence in favor. However, when confronted with unexpected phenomena, such as the first evidence for invisible radiation, experimental scientists use the same approach as historical scientists: construct a set of hypotheses about the causes and look for a "smoking gun". Paleontology lies between biology and geology since it focuses on the record of past life, but its main source of evidence is fossils in rocks. For historical reasons, paleontology is part of the geology department at many universities: in the 19th and early 20th centuries, geology departments found fossil evidence important for dating rocks, while biology departments showed little interest. Paleontology has some overlap with archaeology, which works with objects made by humans and with human remains, while paleontologists are interested in the characteristics and evolution of humans as a species.
When dealing with evidence about humans and paleontologists may work together – for example paleontologists might identify animal or plant fossils around an archaeological site, to discover what the people who lived there ate. In addition, paleontology borrows techniques from other sciences, including biology, ecology, chemistry and mathematics. For example, geochemical signatures from rocks may help to discover when life first arose on Earth, analyses of carbon isotope ratios may help to identify climate changes and to explain major transitions such as the Permian–Triassic extinction event. A recent discipline, molecular phylogenetics, compares the DNA and RNA of modern organisms to re-construct the "family trees" of their
William Hose Flores, Sr. is an American politician, the U. S. Representative for Texas's 17th congressional district since 2011; the district, located in the middle of the state, includes Waco, College Station, Bryan. He is a member of the Republican Party and the former chief executive officer of Phoenix Exploration Company, an oil and natural gas company. Flores was born in Cheyenne, Wyoming at the F. E. Warren Air Force Base, where his father was serving in the military, he is the son of Joe Pete Flores. He grew up in Stratford in the Texas Panhandle, his paternal ancestors left Spain and settled in what is now Texas in 1725. Of his heritage, Flores has said, "My family came from Spain in 1725, if people want to consider me Hispanic, they can, but I didn't advertise that way, I'm an American first." He graduated with a B. B. A. Cum laude in accounting from Texas A&M University in 1976. While there, he was a member of the Corps of Cadets, the MSC Student Conference on National Affairs, the Ross Volunteer Company, Corps Staff.
He served as Student Body Vice-President of Finance during his senior year. He has been a licensed Certified Public Accountant since 1978, he received a Master of Business Administration from Houston Baptist University in 1985. Flores served as the chief financial officer for two publicly traded energy service firms from 1990 through 1998; these companies included Marine Drilling Companies, Inc. and Western Atlas Inc.. From 2002 to 2005, Flores was the Senior Vice CFO of Gryphon Exploration Company. In 2006, a group of five oil and gas industry executives, led by Flores as President and CEO, formed Phoenix Exploration Company with $350 million of capital commitments from a group of private equity firms that included Riverstone Holdings and Pinebrook Partners; the company was engaged in the Gulf of Mexico. Flores served as a Director of that company from its formation until he retired in December 2009 to run for public office. Flores is a former Commissioner of the Texas Real Estate Commission, a past Director and former Chairman of the Board of the Association of Former Students of Texas A&M University.
He has served on boards of Phoenix Exploration Company, Marine Drilling Companies, Inc. FreeBirds, Inc. and The PARC, the Alley Theater of Houston. He serves on the Board of the Private Enterprise Research Center of Texas A&M University and as a member of the Board of Trustees of Houston Baptist University, where he serves as Vice-Chairman. In late 2009 Flores entered the Republican primary for the 17th District, held by 10-term Democratic incumbent Chet Edwards. Flores claimed his worries about the future of "the American dream" inspired him to run for Congress, he committed a half million dollars of his own money to self-fund his campaign. In the Republican primary runoff on April 13, he had defeated Rob Curnock by a 64–36 percent margin; the size of his primary victory was a surprise to many political observers because Curnock was the 2008 nominee and he held Edwards' 2008 vote total close to 50 percent, despite being outspent. During the Republican primary, Flores received the endorsement of former Republican U.
S. Senator Phil Gramm After the primary win, Flores was endorsed by George H. W. Bush, John McCain, Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee. Through December 21, 2010, Flores' campaign raised $3.5 million, of which $1.49 million came from Flores himself. He spent $3.3 million overall. On November 2, 2010, Flores defeated Edwards with 62 percent of the vote; this was the largest margin of defeat for a Democratic incumbent in the 2010 cycle. Flores won his fourth term in the U. S. House in the general election held on November 8, 2016. With 149,417 votes, he defeated the Democrat William Matta, who trailed with 86,603 ballots and the Libertarian Clark Patterson with 9,708. Flores won his fifth term in the U. S. House in the general election held on November 6, 2018. With 134,375 votes, he defeated the Democrat Rick Kennedy, who trailed with 97,574 ballots and the Libertarian Peter Churchman with 4,415, he is notable for holding no face-to-face town halls, has been criticized for blocking his constituents on social media.
Upon his swearing-in, Flores became the first Republican to represent Waco in Congress since Reconstruction. Flores supports limited government and lower taxes. S. Mexico border. Flores supports the building of new nuclear power plants to assist the U. S. in becoming energy self-sufficient. He supports incentives for the development of solar and wind power. Flores is a member of the Conservative Republican Study Committee and the Congressional Hispanic Conference. Flores supported President Donald Trump's 2017 executive order to temporarily curtail Muslim immigration until better screening methods are devised, he stated that “Taking 120-day breath to evaluate the effectiveness of our vetting program is a smart thing to do.” On November 18, 2014, Flores was elected to the Chairmanship of the House Republican Study Committee. Flores was elected on the second ballot, securing 84 votes to South Carolina Representative Mick Mulvaney's 57. Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigation Committee on Veterans' Affairs Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity Subcommittee on Health House Baltic Caucus Congressional Western Caucus Veterinary Medi
Central Texas is a region in the U. S. state of Texas surrounding Austin and bordered by Brady to Brenham to Seguin to Waco. Central Texas contains the Texas Hill Country and corresponds to a physiographic section designation within the Edwards Plateau, in a geographic context. Central Texas includes the Austin–Round Rock, Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood, Bryan–College Station, Waco metropolitan areas; the Austin–Round Rock and Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood areas are among the fastest-growing metropolitan areas in the state. Some of the largest cities in the region are Austin, College Station, Round Rock, Waco; the United States Army's Fort Hood, a large military installation, is located in this region. The counties that are always included in the Central Texas region are: Counties that are sometimes included in the Central Texas region are: List of geographical regions in Texas Texas Hill Country Edwards Plateau Llano Estacado Barkley, Mary Starr. A History of Central Texas. Austin, Texas: Austin Printing.
Fredericksburg, Texas Chamber of Commerce "Celebrate Diversity in Central Texas." Austin American-Statesman
The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
A fossil is any preserved remains, impression, or trace of any once-living thing from a past geological age. Examples include bones, exoskeletons, stone imprints of animals or microbes, objects preserved in amber, petrified wood, coal, DNA remnants; the totality of fossils is known as the fossil record. Paleontology is the study of fossils: their age, method of formation, evolutionary significance. Specimens are considered to be fossils if they are over 10,000 years old; the oldest fossils are around 3.48 billion years old to 4.1 billion years old. The observation in the 19th century that certain fossils were associated with certain rock strata led to the recognition of a geological timescale and the relative ages of different fossils; the development of radiometric dating techniques in the early 20th century allowed scientists to quantitatively measure the absolute ages of rocks and the fossils they host. There are many processes that lead to fossilization, including permineralization and molds, authigenic mineralization and recrystallization, adpression and bioimmuration.
Fossils vary in size from one-micrometre bacteria to dinosaurs and trees, many meters long and weighing many tons. A fossil preserves only a portion of the deceased organism that portion, mineralized during life, such as the bones and teeth of vertebrates, or the chitinous or calcareous exoskeletons of invertebrates. Fossils may consist of the marks left behind by the organism while it was alive, such as animal tracks or feces; these types of fossil are called trace ichnofossils, as opposed to body fossils. Some fossils are called chemofossils or biosignatures; the process of fossilization varies according to external conditions. Permineralization is a process of fossilization; the empty spaces within an organism become filled with mineral-rich groundwater. Minerals precipitate from the groundwater; this process can occur in small spaces, such as within the cell wall of a plant cell. Small scale permineralization can produce detailed fossils. For permineralization to occur, the organism must become covered by sediment soon after death, otherwise decay commences.
The degree to which the remains are decayed when covered determines the details of the fossil. Some fossils consist only of skeletal teeth; this is a form of diagenesis. In some cases, the original remains of the organism dissolve or are otherwise destroyed; the remaining organism-shaped hole in the rock is called an external mold. If this hole is filled with other minerals, it is a cast. An endocast, or internal mold, is formed when sediments or minerals fill the internal cavity of an organism, such as the inside of a bivalve or snail or the hollow of a skull; this is a special form of mold formation. If the chemistry is right, the organism can act as a nucleus for the precipitation of minerals such as siderite, resulting in a nodule forming around it. If this happens before significant decay to the organic tissue fine three-dimensional morphological detail can be preserved. Nodules from the Carboniferous Mazon Creek fossil beds of Illinois, USA, are among the best documented examples of such mineralization.
Replacement occurs. In some cases mineral replacement of the original shell occurs so and at such fine scales that microstructural features are preserved despite the total loss of original material. A shell is said to be recrystallized when the original skeletal compounds are still present but in a different crystal form, as from aragonite to calcite. Compression fossils, such as those of fossil ferns, are the result of chemical reduction of the complex organic molecules composing the organism's tissues. In this case the fossil consists of original material, albeit in a geochemically altered state; this chemical change is an expression of diagenesis. What remains is a carbonaceous film known as a phytoleim, in which case the fossil is known as a compression. However, the phytoleim is lost and all that remains is an impression of the organism in the rock—an impression fossil. In many cases, however and impressions occur together. For instance, when the rock is broken open, the phytoleim will be attached to one part, whereas the counterpart will just be an impression.
For this reason, one term covers the two modes of preservation: adpression. Because of their antiquity, an unexpected exception to the alteration of an organism's tissues by chemical reduction of the complex organic molecules during fossilization has been the discovery of soft tissue in dinosaur fossils, including blood vessels, the isolation of proteins and evidence for DNA fragments. In 2014, Mary Schweitzer and her colleagues reported the presence of iron particles associated with soft tissues recovered from dinosaur fossils. Based on various experiments that studied the interaction of iron in haemoglobin with blood vessel tissue they proposed that solution hypoxia coupled with iron chelation enhances the stability and preservation of soft tissue and provides the basis for an explanation for the unforeseen preservation of fossil soft tissues. However, a older study based on eight taxa ranging in time from the Devonian to the Jurassic found that reasonably well-preserved fibrils that represent collagen were preser
National Park Service
The National Park Service is an agency of the United States federal government that manages all national parks, many national monuments, other conservation and historical properties with various title designations. It was created on August 25, 1916, by Congress through the National Park Service Organic Act and is an agency of the United States Department of the Interior; the NPS is charged with a dual role of preserving the ecological and historical integrity of the places entrusted to its management, while making them available and accessible for public use and enjoyment. As of 2018, the NPS employs 27,000 employees who oversee 419 units, of which 61 are designated national parks. National parks and national monuments in the United States were individually managed under the auspices of the Department of the Interior; the movement for an independent agency to oversee these federal lands was spearheaded by business magnate and conservationist Stephen Mather, as well as J. Horace McFarland. With the help of journalist Robert Sterling Yard, Mather ran a publicity campaign for the Department of the Interior.
They wrote numerous articles that praised the scenic and historic qualities of the parks and their possibilities for educational and recreational benefits. This campaign resulted in the creation of a National Park Service. On August 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed a bill that mandated the agency "to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and wildlife therein, to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations." Mather became the first director of the newly formed NPS. On March 3, 1933, President Herbert Hoover signed the Reorganization Act of 1933; the act would allow the President to reorganize the executive branch of the United States government. It wasn't until that summer when the new President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, made use of this power. Deputy Director Horace M. Albright had suggested to President Roosevelt that the historic sites from the American Civil War should be managed by the National Park Service, rather than the War Department.
President Roosevelt issued two Executive orders to make it happen. These two executive orders not only transferred to the National Park Service all the War Department historic sites, but the national monuments managed by the Department of Agriculture and the parks in and around the capital, run by an independent office. In 1951, Conrad Wirth became director of the National Park Service and went to work on bringing park facilities up to the standards that the public expected; the demand for parks after the end of the World War II had left the parks overburdened with demands that could not be met. In 1952, with the support of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, he began Mission 66, a ten-year effort to upgrade and expand park facilities for the 50th anniversary of the Park Service. New parks were added to preserve unique resources and existing park facilities were upgraded and expanded. In 1966, as the Park Service turned 50 years old, emphasis began to turn from just saving great and wonderful scenery and unique natural features to making parks accessible to the public.
Director George Hartzog began the process with the creation of the National Lakeshores and National Recreation Areas. Since its inception in 1916, the National Park Service has managed each of the United States' national parks, which have grown in number over the years to 60. Yellowstone National Park was the first national park in the United States. In 1872, there was no state government to manage it, so the federal government assumed direct control. Yosemite National Park began as a state park. Yosemite was returned to federal ownership. At first, each national park was managed independently, with varying degrees of success. In Yellowstone, the civilian staff was replaced by the U. S. Army in 1886. Due to the irregularities in managing these national treasures, Stephen Mather petitioned the federal government to improve the situation. In response, Secretary of the Interior Franklin K. Lane challenged him to lobby for creating a new agency, the National Park Service, to manage all national parks and some national monuments.
Mather was successful with the ratification of the National Park Service Organic Act in 1916. The agency was given authority over other protected areas, many with varying designations as Congress created them; the National Park System includes. The title or designation of a unit need not include the term park; the System as a whole is considered to be a national treasure of the United States, some of the more famous national parks and monuments are sometimes referred to metaphorically as "crown jewels". The system encompasses 84.4 million acres, of which more than 4.3 million acres remain in private ownership. The largest unit is Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. At 13,200,000 acres, it is over 16 percent of the entire system; the smallest unit in the system is Thaddeus Kosciuszko National Memorial, Pennsylvania, at 0.02 acre. In addition to administering its units and other properties, the National Park Service provides technical and financial assistance to several "affiliated areas" authorized by Congress.
The largest affiliated area is New Jersey Pinelands National Reserve at 1,164,025 acres. The smallest is Benjamin Franklin National Memorial at less than 0.01 acres. Although all units of the Nat