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Twentynine Palms in San Bernardino County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Champion of the Desert

 
 
Champion of the Desert Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 18, 2014
1. Champion of the Desert Marker
Inscription.
Minerva Hamilton Hoyt was a Pasadena, California gardener and civic leader who loved desert landscapes. She saw beauty in the desert where others saw an empty wasteland or an opportunity for profit. Mrs. Hoyt believed that outstanding desert lands should be protected and cherished. She set out to teach others to see the beauty and uniqueness of desert plants and arid lands.

As a leader in the Garden Club of America, Mrs. Hoyt created a series of successful exhibits about the desert landscapes that she brought to New York, Boston. and London, England. Moving from education to activism, she founded the International Desert Conservation League in 1930 and set a goal of establishing a national park to protect the rich desert vegetation in the mountains north and east of Palm Springs.

After many setbacks, Mrs. Hoyt, persuaded President Franklin Roosevelt to establish Joshua Tree National Monument through Presidential proclamation on August 10, 1936.

On October 31, 1994 the California Desert Protection Act added 234,000 acres to Joshua Tree and renamed it Joshua Tree National Park.
 
Location. 34° 7.726′ N, 116° 2.246′ W. Marker is in Twentynine Palms, California, in San Bernardino County. Marker can be reached from the
Minerva Hamilton Hoyt Mural (<i>wide view; marker visible at left</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 18, 2014
2. Minerva Hamilton Hoyt Mural (wide view; marker visible at left)
intersection of Utah Trail and National Park Drive, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is located near the main entrance of the Joshua Tree National Park Oasis Visitor Center. Marker is at or near this postal address: 74485 National Park Drive, Twentynine Palms CA 92277, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 2 other markers are within 15 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Minerva Hamilton Hoyt (within shouting distance of this marker); Silver Bell Mine (approx. 14.3 miles away).
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Minerva Hamilton Hoyt
 
Also see . . .
1. Minerva Hoyt.
Not many will recall Minerva Hamilton Hoyt and her tireless efforts on behalf of California desert protection. In fact, without her leadership, Joshua Tree National Park might never have become part of the National Park System. How a transplanted southern belle born on a Mississippi plantation became a staunch backer of the protection of desert landscapes is perhaps one of the more unlikely stories in the annals of national park history. (Submitted on April 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. Minerva Hoyt - Southern belle to desert lady.
Minerva Hamilton Hoyt was bona fide American royalty. She was born on a Mississippi plantation in 1866 and attended finishing schools in a rarified and privileged atmosphere. In southern California,
Oasis Visitor Center - Joshua Tree National Park image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 18, 2014
3. Oasis Visitor Center - Joshua Tree National Park
Turn here to access the visitor center and the marker.
Minerva did the de rigueur round of cultural and civic affairs, but she also became passionate about gardening, making excursions to the nearby deserts, as did many others in their newfangled motor cars. Eventually, she came to feel that the desert would be best protected as a national, rather than a state, park, and so she began dunning the president. The timing was fortuitous: It was the Depression, and President Franklin Roosevelt wanted to create jobs–some of them in national parks. Minerva Hoyt died in 1945. She is called the “Apostle of the Cacti.” (Submitted on April 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

3. Minerva Hoyt California Desert Conservation Award.
The Minerva Hoyt California Desert Conservation Award recognizes annually individuals or organizations that have worked to further Mrs. Hoyt’s legacy by making notable achievements in the areas of leadership, protection, preservation, research, education, and stewardship of California’s desert lands. The award seeks to recognize an individual or persons whose efforts lead to a significant and lasting contribution on behalf of the deserts of California. (Submitted on April 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. EnvironmentNotable PlacesParks & Recreational AreasWomen
 
Oasis Visitor Center - Joshua Tree National Park (<i>near marker</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 18, 2014
4. Oasis Visitor Center - Joshua Tree National Park (near marker)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 1, 2018. This page originally submitted on April 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 48 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on April 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.
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