The Regional Review

Volume III - No. 2

August, 1939


The Regional Review

Vol. III August, 1939 Number 2


The Review notes elsewhere (see page 30) Conservation's abstract of an article describing the creation and development of a system of national parka in the Belgian Congo. It constitutes the most recent addition to the growing but still woefully inadequate sum of information concerning the progress which has been made throughout the world in the establishment and protection of natural reserves and historic sites.

The contribution, although modest, is welcomed by all those in the Service who have an interest in keeping abreast of the plodding but determined forward steps achieved in the field of international conservation during these parlous years of world preoccupation with undeclared wars and rumors of wars to come. The addition is but a thin slice, however, of the somewhat formidable loaf which is needed with increasing urgency for the documentary larder of the national park movement.

There does not exist even an up-to-date skeletal directory of the world's preserves; certainly there is no comprehensive work that assembles authoritative materials relating to their geologic, biologic, scenic and historic features, to the origins of their sponsorship, to the methods by which they were established, and to the directive machinery by which they are maintained as national trusts and safe-guarded against destruction or exploitation.

Preparation of such a volume is a task to affright the faint-hearted. An almost endless round-the-world correspondence, tedious compiling and patient triple checking are among the onerous requisites which appear to be sufficiently forbidding to discourage part-time, left-handed study. Yet the labor, once completed, would be a solid keystone contribution which well might afford support for many complementary studies. The subject, if treated exhaustively, would exceed by far the scope of a single doctoral dissertation or of a one- or two-year fellowship, but either or both of those would appear to offer a means of implementing the endeavor by providing a basic outline. Altogether, the task should be inviting to some fearless researcher favored with ample leisure, tireless eyes and strong constitution.


A gratifying letter was received by the Service this month from R.J. Erskine Orr, Managing Editor of The Greenock (Scotland) Telegraph, who expressed his admiration for America's accomplishments in historical conservation. "My closest contact with it was at Richmond, Va.," he wrote. "We were much impressed with the care and thoroughness with which the work of restoring the battlefields is being carried out, and the interest which is added to it by creating a museum on the very spot. . . . Mr. [Floyd B.] Taylor took us to Jamestown, Williamsburg and Yorktown, all of which were very striking to us in their combination of clear and accurate historical lay-out with the dignity which ought to be preserved. . ."

The first of a series of American articles which Mr. Orr is writing in his newspaper also commends the Service and urges Britons to see this country's shrines.--H.R.A.

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Date: 04-Jul-2002