The first of many attempts to create a national park in the North Cascades occurred in 1906. But it was not until Senator Henry M. "Scoop" Jackson took the issue to the people "for guidance and direction" that the park became a reality. In what he called "one of the most impressive exercises of citizen involvement ever engaged in as part of a national conservation program," hundreds of people testified on all sides of the issue over a six-year period in Washington State and Washington, D.C., at hearings of the North Cascades Study Team and the U.S. Senate and House Interior Committees.
Finally, on October 2, 1968, the Jackson bill to create a system of park, wilderness and national recreation areas in the North Cascades was signed into law. Describing the result as a "regional recreational and conservation complex unparalleled in the world in its scenic grandeur," Senator Jackson said "it is also unparalleled in that... the public, the people of this State, have made the important decisions."