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Katmai National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, a six-part documentary series directed by Ken Burns and co-produced with his longtime colleague, Dayton Duncan, who also wrote the script, is the story of an idea as uniquely American as the Declaration of Independence and just as radical: that the most special places in the nation should be preserved, not for royalty or the rich, but for everyone.

Monday, September 2 at 9 p.m.
The Scripture of Nature (1851 – 1890)
Examine the radical idea of creating national parks for the enjoyment of everyone.

Tuesday, September 3 at 9 p.m.
The Last Refuge (1890 – 1915)
Investigate the efforts of Theodore Roosevelt, John Muir and others to preserve and protect pristine lands.

Wednesday, September 4 at 9 p.m.
The Empire of Grandeur (1915 – 1919)
Learn about the federal agency created to protect the parks and the fight over the Grand Canyon.

Thursday, September 5 at 9 p.m.
Going Home (1920 – 1933)
A look at the growing numbers of visitors to the parks and those who advocate for park expansion.

Friday, September 6 at 9 p.m.
Great Nature (1933 – 1945)
Learn about the changes to the national parks during the Great Depression and World War II.

Saturday, September 7 at 9 p.m.
The Morning of Creation (1946 – 1980)
Examine the proliferation of protected lands and the protection of predatory animals.

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