(In this entry, I want to bring together some summary items, to give all those separate posts a bit more coherence. First, an overall sketch.)
We started in 1882 with the cozy partnership of Powell and Harrison. The former was the prime mover, and came up with the "big square" to celebrate the Big Hole. They tried the Congressional route, but were stymied. In 1893, with Harrison President and a new power to reserve public lands, the Grand Canyon Forest Reserve was created, still the big hole inside its four lines.
In a time of rampant exploitation of any & every resource, every year meant more people with more claims or dreams of many kinds were crowding in. But also, more people were learning about and coming to see the Canyon, suggesting all too often that here was a another resource to be developed. Amidst complaints from local sheepmen and miners about the Reserve, the GCNP idea gained solidity when Pinchot + Muir, big men in what was forming as the conservation movement, made a joint visit as members of the Cleveland-appointed National Forestry Commission. The Commission's favorable recommendation for a Park was made in May 1897. Funds for surveying the township lines were appropriated in June, and in January 1898 Examiner Edward Bender made a formal report to the General Land Office (GLO) lauding the Canyon and the Park idea. March 1898, Pinchot reiterated the Commission recommendation to the Secretary of the Interior. The GLO Commissioner made that move in May, and the SecInt called for legislation. Further support came from the new Forest Reserve Supervisor in October.