Overview

Devoted conservationist, environmentalist, and explorer Robert Marshall (1901-1939) was chief of the Division of Recreation and Lands, U.S. Forest Service, when he died at age thirty-eight. Throughout his short but intense life, Marshall helped catalyze the preservation of millions of wilderness acres in all parts of the U.S., inspired countless wilderness advocates, and was a pioneer in the modern environmental movement: he and seven fellow conservationists founded the Wilderness Society in 1935. First published...

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The People's Forests

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Overview

Devoted conservationist, environmentalist, and explorer Robert Marshall (1901-1939) was chief of the Division of Recreation and Lands, U.S. Forest Service, when he died at age thirty-eight. Throughout his short but intense life, Marshall helped catalyze the preservation of millions of wilderness acres in all parts of the U.S., inspired countless wilderness advocates, and was a pioneer in the modern environmental movement: he and seven fellow conservationists founded the Wilderness Society in 1935. First published in 1933, The People's Forests made a passionate case for the public ownership and management of the nation's forests in the face of generations of devastating practices; its republication now is especially timely.

Marshall describes the major values of forests as sources of raw materials, as essential resources for the conservation of soil and water, and as a “precious environment for recreation” and for “the happiness of millions of human beings.” He considers the pros and cons of private and public ownership, deciding that public ownership and large-scale public acquisition are vital in order to save the nation's forests, and sets out ways to intelligently plan for and manage public ownership.

The last words of this book capture Marshall's philosophy perfectly: “The time has come when we must discard the unsocial view that our woods are the lumbermen's and substitute the broader ideal that every acre of woodland in the country is rightly a part of the people's forests.”

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Editorial Reviews

The New Yorker
While walking in South Africa in 1829, the British missionary Robert Moffat came upon a giant fig tree so large that, according to his report, it housed seventeen huts in its branches. The historian Thomas Pakenham, in Remarkable Trees of the World</-a>, spent four years searching for such giants -- "trees with noble brows and strong personalities" -- and recording their mythologies. The baobab, native to Africa, Madagascar, and Australia, was of special interest to him; according to African legend, trees were gifts to animals from the Great Spirit, and the hyena, enraged to be given the baobab, speared it into the ground, leaving its tangled roots to become branches. American trees are equally impressive: one of California's ancient sequoias, the "Stratosphere Giant," stands taller than a thirty-story skyscraper.
In 1848, New York needed trees: they were considered the "lungs of the City," according to a new field guide published by the city's Department of Parks and Recreation,
New York City Trees, written and illustrated by Edward Sibley Barnard. The guide describes more than a hundred local species, and it also explains which park was razed by Civil War soldiers, why Orchard Street is so named, and where to find the city's little-known sassafras thickets.

The environmentalist Robert Marshall's The People's Forests first published in 1933, urges public ownership of forestland to guard against logging and other urban perils. On the other hand, Marshall acknowledges the persistence of nature. "The death of the forest and the death of man are not quite the same," he writes. "When a man dies it is the end."( Lauren Porcaro)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781609380229
  • Publisher: University of Iowa Press
  • Publication date: 6/2/2002
  • Series: American Land & Life
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 264
  • File size: 738 KB

Meet the Author

Devoted conservationist, environmentalist, and explorer Robert Marshall (1901-1939) was chief of the Division of Recreation and Lands, U.S. Forest Service, when he died at age thirty-eight. Throughout his short but intense life, Marshall helped catalyze the preservation of millions of wilderness acres in all parts of the U.S., inspired countless wilderness advocates, and was a pioneer in the modern environmental movement: he and seven fellow conservationists founded the Wilderness Society in 1935. First published in 1933, The People's Forests made a passionate case for the public ownership and management of the nation's forests in the face of generations of devastating practices; its republication now is especially timely.
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Table of Contents



Contents

The People's Forests in the Twenty-First Century
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