1862 The first Pacific Railway Act was signed by President Lincoln on July 1, 1862. It authorized the building of the transcontinental railroad and granted rights of way to the Union Pacific to build westward from Omaha, Nebraska, and to the Central Pacific to build eastward from Sacramento, California. Two years later on July 2, 1864, a second Pacific Railway Act was passed. It doubled the size of the land grants and allowed the railroads to sell their own bonds.
Image by C.H. Wells from the December 7, 1867 issue of Harper's Weekly
1908 President Theodore Roosevelt created a number of national forests including Sundance, Hayden, Wyoming, Bonneville, Teton, and Shoshone. Their names and boundaries would be changed but the lands would remain part of the U.S. National Forest System.