The Regional Review

Volume III - No. 3

September, 1939


Policies governing the program of the National Park Service concerning predation are restated clearly by Secretary Ickes in a letter replying to an inquiry from California. It says, in part:

The total area of all the national parks, monuments and other reservations in the national park system is less than .8 per cent of the total area of the United States, its territories and possessions. . . . The national parks and monuments are set apart to preserve nature intact and unimpaired on this relatively insignificant fraction of our national land area. These reservations have been selected because they are outstanding examples of the native character of our country. As long as they are under my jurisdiction I want to keep them whole, without exploiting any of their natural resources for commercial advantage. The remaining 99.2 per cent of the nation's land is available for other uses. Predatory animal control is practiced widely on the 400,000,000 acres of public lands and on private lands where desired.

I see no inconsistency in devoting a small fraction of our lands to national parks and in protecting them from the commercial uses and practices of the remainder. I see no inconsistency in protecting all native wildlife in one area, for people to enjoy, and in controlling wildlife on another area that is devoted to the raising of domestic livestock. Our country is not so poor that it cannot afford to save some of its natural heritage unspoiled.

This Department, moreover, has maintained a reasonable wildlife policy in its administration of the national park system. Control measures are authorized when the facts of the case clearly demonstrate that such control is necessary. On the other hand, no control is practiced without proof of such necessity. I believe this is a fair policy . . .


A new high record for travel to Great Smoky Mountains National Park was set in August when a total of 169,998 persons visited the North Carolina-Tennessee area. Two out of every three visitors were from states other than Tennessee and North Carolina, and Ohio, with 24,251, led even North Carolina in the park visitation lists. The total for the first 11 months of the travel year (October 1-September 30) reached 663,134. The total for the entire travel year of 1938 was 694,634.

A total of 174,568 visitors was reported during August at Shenandoah National Park, Virginia, which has been leading all units of the national park system in annual travel. The total for the year reached 753,781, a slight decrease under the figures for 1938.

Approximately 100,000 visitors were recorded during the month at Statue of Liberty National Monument.


Books, manuscripts, photographs and valuable historical objects are being added to the collections of many Service areas as the public becomes increasingly aware that the facilities with which the parks are equipped adapt them admirably for service as repositories.

The library of American civil war history at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park has grown to 1,436 items as a result of negotiations carried out with city, state and university libraries. Noteworthy donations have been made by the University of Michigan, Michigan State Library, Wisconsin Historical Society, the Chicago Public Library and the Michigan Department or the G. A. R. Among other materials acquired recently by the park were several scenes from the famous Manassas Panorama, which once was regarded as one of the marvels of Washington.

A diary just presented to Fort Pulaski National Monument contains the notes of a Confederate officer who was stationed on Cockspur Island from December 1861 until the siege and surrender in April 1862. More valuable still is the journal which Lieutenant L. Wilson Landershine wrote while a prisoner on Governors Island, in New York harbor, by expanding the daily notes he had made at Fort Pulaski. It contains considerable unpublished information. Accompanying the journal and diary was a stereoscopic view of the fort walls.


Associate Landscape Architect Kenneth A. Tapscott, for six years a member of the Service's Branch of Plans and Design, died in a Richmond hospital August 22 after an emergency operation for appendicitis. Burial was in Arlington National Cemetery where military services were conducted.

Born 46 years ago in Brooklyn, New York, Mr. Tapscott graduated from Cornell University in 1915. He enlisted in the Army in 1917, gained the rank of second lieutenant, and participated in four battles in France. He was wounded at Blanc-Mont. After entering the Service in 1933 he played a vital part in planning the development programs of the national military parks, particularly those in Virginia.

Those are the bare biographical facts. To describe adequately the evaluation placed upon his character and services by all who knew Mr. Tapscott exceeds ordinary expression. Perhaps it was summed best by one of his associates: "I never knew a kindlier, more conscientious man. Entirely aside from his professional ability, which itself will be wanting, we shall always miss him."

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Date: 04-Jul-2002