Monday marked the 150th anniversary of the land grant that established what we know now as Yosemite National Park. On June 30, 1864 in the middle of the Civil War President Abraham Lincoln signed an act “authorizing a grant to the State of California of the Yo-Semite Valley, and of the land embracing the Mariposa Big Tree Grove.”
Now 150 years later, the park's anniversary also marks a new start for an ambitious plan to restore the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. The non-profit Yosemite Conservancy announced on Monday a $20 million donation to the park to help fund the project. On Valley Edition, we spoke with the conservancy's president Mike Tollefson about the donation and the park's anniversary.