Volume II - No. 3
FIRE RECORD BEST IN 10 YEARS; NEW SCHOOLS PLANNED
National parks and monuments established during 1938 the best fire protection and suppression record in a decade with the total acreage damaged throughout the entire system limited to only 1,279, according to the annual report issued this month. Although the total of 416 fires is higher than the 10-year average, improved detection and combat methods checked the damage early and held the burned acreage at a low figure. The average fire in 1929 burned over 315 acres before it could be arrested, but the average last year damaged only three acres.
A total of 577 acres of timber, brush and grass lands was burned in the 14 reporting national parks, parkways and monuments of Region One. There were 199 fires, all of them man-caused, with 79 listed as incendiary and 64 as due to smokers. Civilian Conservation Corps enrollees of the Region contributed 1,960 man-days to fire suppression. Fire prevention education is proving publicly effective, the annual report points out, citing the record of one fire caused by a careless camper or smoker for each 86,121 visitors in 1938 as compared with a 10-year average of one fire for each 50,520 visitors.
In those encouraging circumstances, forestry personnel and other CCC camp staff members will assemble within the next few days for two fire schools arranged by the Service in New England. First of them will be held March 29-31 at Beach Pond Recreational Demonstration Area, Nooseneck, Rhode Island. The last regularly scheduled school will take place April 4-6 at Bear Brook Recreational Demonstration Area, Suncook, New Hampshire. Schools already have been held this year at Shenandoah National Park, Virginia; Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky, and Cheraw Recreational Demonstration Area, South Carolina.
LANDS TRANSFERRED AT APPOMATTOX
Approximately 964 acres of land situated within the area of the proposed Appomattox National Historical Monument have been transferred to the Department of the Interior from the Department of Agriculture through a recent executive order from the White House. The property had been acquired by the Farm Security Administration (formerly the Resettlement Administration) as a part of the Surrender Grounds Forest Project. It adjoins the one-acre Appomattox National Battlefield Site created in 1930.
BRITISH GOVERNMENT TO DEVELOP ORGANIZED CAMPS
A gigantic construction program which ultimately may provide for development of 5,700 organized camps bearing a similarity to those initiated by the Service on Recreational Demonstration Areas has been revealed by a request received from Great Britain for information on camp planning. Already authorized is the construction of 50 camps but it is estimated that nearly one-half billion dollars will be required to provide for the total number of recreational centers needed in England. The camps are designed primarily to afford safe refuges for children in time of war emergencies but they also will provide rural vacations for young people during peace time.
CAMP LIFE AN AMERICAN TRADITION, SAYS ROOSEVELT
"I have always been a believer in the discipline and training afforded by camp life," said President Roosevelt in a recent address broadcast to the Boy Scouts of America. "Life in the open constitutes an ideal recreation, while at the same time it encourages initiative, resourcefulness and self-confidence. . .
"Camp life is an American institution. It is a way of life. A generation trained in the art of camping will receive experience which I believe will give them exceptional equipment with which to cope with some of the most vexatious problems of life in the years to come."
TWO NEW STATE PARKS SOUGHT IN MARYLAND
Acquisition of two more state park areas in southern Maryland and on the Eastern Shore was recommended this month by the Planning and Forestry Committee of the Maryland Outdoor Life Federation. The group also proposed the purchase of 50,000 acres of forest land at a cost of $150,000, as well as the acquisition of 100,000 acres of potential forest in the triangular area between Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis, described as "now largely given over to scrub pine or abandoned farm land." The triangle should be traversed by a parkway, the committee recommended, and provided with bathing beaches and other recreational areas. Streams in the area would be improved by soil erosion control practices and by wood land rehabilitation.
FREDERICKSBURG MUSEUM GETS NEW MATERIALS
Two valuable new acquisitions for the museum have been announced by Branch Spalding, Superintendent of Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park. Correspondence, books, purchase orders, expense accounts and other original papers of Paymaster Ware, of the Mobile station of the Confederate States Navy, have been given to the museum by the National Bank of Fredericksburg. The City Council meanwhile has placed on loan a collection of nearly 200 old rifles, muskets, swords and pistols of the period of the War between the States. The materials were purchased by the city authorities for $900.
The park superintendent announced also that the last meeting of the series of monthly gatherings of the staffs of the Virginia military parks will be held in April at Petersburg. The group met this month at the Cold Harbor battlefield, was conducted on a tour by Floyd Taylor, representative-in-charge, and heard papers by Assistant Research Technician Steere and Mr. Taylor at a conference in the Garthright House.
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