PCSS 2016 - Harrisburg, Oct. 20-22

 
 

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Pennsylvania Council for the Social Studies shared National Archives at Philadelphia's photo. ... See MoreSee Less

Celebrate Arbor Day – And Our Trees Arbor Day is an annual tree-planting holiday which was celebrated for the first time in the U.S. on April 10, 1872 in Nebraska City, Nebraska, home of the American Arbor Day’s founder, J. Sterling Morton. Emulated in other states, Arbor Day became an official national holiday observed on the last Friday in April which this year falls on April 29. Pennsylvania celebrates its Arbor Day on the same day as the American national observance. Some states have selected other dates in order to offer optimal climate conditions for planting trees. The focus of Arbor Day has broadened over the years to include a major educational component emphasizing the benefits of trees in our modern world. Today the Arbor Day Foundation, operating from its original base in Nebraska, sponsors a Tree City USA program to promote effective urban and community forestry programs. With its population of 1.5 million, Philadelphia is the Largest Tree City USA in Pennsylvania. Seeking ways to honor this year’s Arbor Day, NARA at Philadelphia staff took the opportunity to review our holdings of Records of the U.S. Forest Service (Record Group 95). Among these are the large collection of photographs taken by officers of the Northeastern Forest Experiment Station (NFES), the first federal forest research establishment in the Northeast. Instituted in New England in 1923, the Station grew to include the Allegheny Forest Experiment Station, created in 1927 to study the forestry-research problems of the Mid-Atlantic States. The primary purpose of the Allegheny Forest team was to enhance the growth and management of commercially important Allegheny hardwoods. In Pennsylvania vast tracts of virgin hemlock had been depleted due to the harvesting of the trees and use of the valuable tannic acid contained in hemlock bark for industrial purposes such as the tanning of leather and the production of dyes for the textile industry. Reforestation efforts were eventually undertaken using other species of trees which were more valued for their wood products. Photograph: Northeast Forest Experiment Station researcher explores original growth hemlock tract in the Allegheny National Forest, Pennsylvania, August 22, 1932. Virgin stands of hemlock could still be found in inland, underpopulated portions of Pennsylvania, at the time the project team conducted its first studies of state forest lands. The hemlock, by the way, is Pennsylvania’s state tree. #ArborDay #AlleghenyNationalForest #Pennsylvania Today's post was written by Gail E. Farr, Archives Specialist at the National Archives at Philadelphia. Series Citation: Photographs, 1923-2001. Records of the Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Forest Experiment Station. Record Group 95, National Archives at Philadelphia. (Record Entry ID: PH-3926). (Series NAID: 28208828)

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