Sandi and Joe Frenzel have no regrets about cutting down an old-growth live cottonwood tree on their Little Missouri Cattle Ranch along the banks of the river where Theodore Roosevelt once rode. The tree is one of many harvested from heritage ranches in the North Dakota badlands that will be used to build the authentic reproduction of TR’s Elkhorn Ranch Cabin at the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library (TRPL) in Dickinson.
One of the great uncanny moments in the history of American conservation occurred at the Smithsonian Institution in 1887. Taxidermist, naturalist, and wildlife activist William Hornaday (1854-1937) was fussing over the last adjustments on his avant-garde glass box diorama that would display what he called “the finest and most complete series of buffalo . . . ever collected for a museum.” Hornaday was something of a prima donna. He had hung heavy curtains all around the glass box. Absolutely nobody would be permitted to see his taxidermical masterpiece until he determined that the bison display was ready for public viewing.
On an otherwise quiet day an uninvited stranger with an emphatic manner and a falsetto voice started asking questions from outside the protective curtains.
With Theodore Roosevelt, there are many stories to tell. So many, in fact, that to choose which facets of this fascinating, multi-dimensional character’s life and legacy to present, and how to present them, is a challenging prospect.
This is where story and space combine, and where professional museum planning comes into play. To facilitate this step, the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation (TRPLF) is hiring a nationally-acclaimed consulting firm that will provide museum planning, experience planning, and financial feasibility services for the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library (TRPL).
The Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation (TRPLF) board of directors had a delightful opportunity to learn from the experience and expertise of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (ALPLM) staff when it traveled to Springfield, Illinois, for its monthly meeting on May 18 &19, 2017.