CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, PLEASE COPY
The Service's ears have been burning at a great rate
this month while, by press and radio, appreciative observers said nice
things about its life and works.
The Atlanta Journal, long proud that
its daily issue "Covers Dixie Like the Dew," said editorially on March
13: ". . . We in this country are just now fairly awakening to the values
of our history. Always, of course, devoted groups have cherished the
landmarks and shrines of the past, but now the public --- at least the
thinking, feeling part of the public --- turns to such spots with eager
hears and eyes. Tourists and vacationists will select a route to visit
the house where a poet was born or to stand on a hillside where
regiments of men died for a conviction. No small measure of the credit
for this aroused and growing interest be longs to the National Park
Service. Its development of historic areas is done so discerningly, so
coherently and with so fine a sense of educational benefits that the
result is often equally gratifying to the veteran student and the
young engineer. . ."
Edwin C. Hill, veteran air commentator, flashed the
nation a tidy bouquet on the night of March 4 when he pointed a finger
of praise at activities now under way at the Statue of Liberty National
Monument. He broadcast: "Bartholdi's Big Girl down the bay is having
her face lifted. Pedicurists, manicurists and
cosmeticians are industriously restoring her beauty; for the remodeling
of Bedloe's Island as a national park, and the incidental restoration
of the majestic Statue of Liberty, is well under way. . . From the tiny
walk in the torch held high in the right hand of Miss Liberty, 300 feet
above the waters of New York harbor, men swarm like ants, grading and
planning the reclaiming of five acres to be taken from the water. Its
reclaimed green lawns and flower gardens will make the little park one
of the beauty spots of America and with a perfect setting facing the
towers of Manhattan. . ."
An episode at Fort Marion National Monument,
Florida, which in February recorded 28,841 visitors from all 48 states
and four foreign countries, suggests that educational opportunities,
like most other things, are where you find them.
After a class of third grade school children had made
a tour of the ancient Spanish citadel in St. Augustine, the teacher gave
an examination which required her
charges to append pencil sketches of features that
had interested them most of all.
The results, transmitted to
Service officials, "proved remarkably interesting."
The Monument staff now is analyzing this fund of pre-adolescent
observations with the aim of preparing a special guide script for
visitors of the indicated age group.
It well may be that a little child shall lead the
Boa bison of the Department of the Interior to those fathomless
springs whence issue the fugitive waters of the crystal stream of