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Associated Press, Published May 18 2013

ND unveils tribute to former US president's legacy

DICKINSON, N.D. – A project unveiled recently in North Dakota highlights the accomplishments of a former U.S. president who used to hunt and raise cattle in the state.

Fifteen locations along the Theodore Roosevelt Trail feature information about the 26th president, a revered figure in North Dakota who first visited the Dakota Badlands in 1883.

The landmarks include Theodore Roosevelt National Park, Elkhorn Ranch, a statue in Dickinson and a sculpture on the campus of North Dakota State University in Fargo.

North Dakota historian and author Clay Jenkinson said the tour – nicknamed the TR Trail – shows the extent of Roosevelt’s influence in the state.

“We know that Roosevelt had a much wider influence in North Dakota than just his legacy in the Badlands,” Jenkinson said. “In working on this project, we discovered that every one of these sites has a fascinating, and as yet untold, story.”

The project was completed at Dickinson State University’s Theodore Roosevelt Center. A map and directions to stops on the trail can be found in brochures or on the center’s website, which includes writings, pictures, old newspaper articles and biographical information.

“The trail is a great new way to explore the history of North Dakota at sites that were influenced by (Roosevelt),” North Dakota Department of Commerce Tourism Director Sara Otte Coleman said. “The stops will allow travelers to see a large portion of the state and get a better appreciation for the impact Roosevelt has on North Dakota and the nation.”

Developers of the project are hoping other states will follow suit and honor Roosevelt’s accomplishments.

“We want to encourage every other state, especially in the West,” said Jenkinson. “We hope they use our template and create the TR Trail of Montana, Oregon, and so on.”