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NPS Expansion: 1930s







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NPS 1933-39




Appendix 10

Expansion of the National Park Service in the 1930s:
Administrative History

Appendix 10
National Park Service Arrowhead

National Park Service
Region Two
300 Keeline Building,
Omaha, Nebraska

Subject: Functions and General Procedure, Region Two.

Under date of August 6, the Director's Office in Washington issued a memorandum whereby the National Park Service was regionalized and stating the policies under that regionalization.

The following memorandum is intended to state in more detail the application of the Director's memorandum to the activities in Region Two. This memorandum carries forward a good many statements exactly as made in the Director's original instructions. They are repeated simply for easy reference both at Omaha and in the field.

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Principal Officers in Region Two now consist of:

Regional Director, Thos. J. Allen, Jr.
Associate Regional Director, Paul V. Brown,
Acting Assistant Regional Director, Donald B. Alexander,
Acting Assistant Regional Director, Earl C. Grever,
Acting Assistant Regional Director, J. A. Wallace,
Regional Supervisor, Recreation Study, Harry E. Curtis,
Chief Clerk, Rowe Morrell.


The headquarters of this Region are at Omaha, Nebraska. As one of the Regional Directors will be on duty in the Washington Office at all times, Regional Director Allen will serve there during part of the year. Contacts between the Washington Office Branches and the Regional Offices will be handled through the Regional Director on duty in the Washington Office. Correspondence between the Washington Office and the Regional Director shall be routed through the Regional Director on duty in the Washington Office.

The Regional Director is the Director's administrative representative for Region Two and is generally responsible for the furtherance of the Service's regular and emergency programs in the Region. He will be in general charge of public contact work in accordance with approved plans and policies, and of the development of cooperation with Federal, State, and local agencies, legislators, State planning boards, etc. He will have supervision over, and be responsible for, the coordination of the water rights and historic sites and buildings surveys, and of the park, parkway, and recreational area study. He will exercise administrative control over the technical forces in the Region.

The accepted policy that the Superintendents and Custodians are responsible for all activities in the parks and monuments will obtain. The Regional Directors shall study the problems in the national park and monument areas in collaboration with the Superintendents and Custodians so that the policies and practices of the Service will be handled uniformly, and so that there will be continuity of policy, regardless of individual interpretations and changes in personnel.

The National Capital Parks, the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Project and similar memorial projects, and the Blue Ridge and Natchez Trace Parkways and similar parkway projects during the planning and construction stages shall be handled independently of the Service Regions, except where experience dictates that cooperation between the Regional Director and the official or officials in charge of the activities mentioned is advantageous to the Service. In Region Two the Rushmore Mountain National Memorial is handled independently of the Region.

Special duties and responsibilities may be assigned by the Director to the Regional Directors for handling outside of their regions.

The Regional Director will personally approve plans covering projects in national park and monument areas in Region Two, regardless of the source of funds, in accordance with instructions outlined by Washington Office Order 342, dated September 28, 1937.


The Associate Regional Director while concerned with all matters in the Region is individually responsible for heading up the administration of the State Park program in the Region; for formulation of procedure affecting planning and development of State and other park areas; for approval of plans covering projects in State Parks; collaboration with technicians and review of master plans and work programs on State Parks; for cooperation and consultation between Park Service officials and State Planning agencies on matters pertaining to State Parks.

In the absence of Regional Director, the Associate Regional Director is designated to serve as Acting Regional Director.

(Operations - Conservation - Protection and Interpretation)

This Assistant Regional Director will have supervision over all office procedure, all fiscal matters and personnel; control of expenditures; determination of accounting requirements; custody of files and records; control of project and job allotments, all travel itineraries and travel accounts; all procurement activities and cost records; supervision of accident prevention programs; direction of and collaboration with the Assistant Regional Director, in charge of ERA procurement.

(ERA Fiscal Operations)

Responsible for the administration of ERA fiscal matters in Region Two.

Administers the activities of the regional technical staff by coordination of routing and progress of job plans, job comments and review by technical branches concerned. Maintains progress charts on individual jobs throughout the region.


Coordination of administrative matters affecting field educational programs, geological investigations, wildlife and fish protection management, compilation of scientific data, planning and development of museums, exhitibs, [sic] or displays, interpretative and research programs pertaining to historic and archeological sites; correlation of forest and fire protection activities; and general administrative coordination of activities affecting the park ranger programs.

(Research and Long Range Planning and Development)

Reviews and approves Project Work Outline Programs and Estimates of Costs. Makes recommendations as to project and job allotments.

Reviews individual Job Applications and Plans to determine whether they can be entertained within existing legislation, Service and other guiding regulations, instructions and orders and National Park Service policy.

To review and recommend approval or disapproval all plans including Master Plans.

Coordinates all steps as to acquisition of tracts of land on Recreational Demonstration Project areas and activities in connection with acceptance, development and maintenance and operation of same.

Collaboration with the Regional Supervisor of Recreation Study on the broad aspects of his work and its relation to the general regional administration.


Supervision of work of the Recreational Area Study in the Region; correlation of planning and technical matters in this field with state recreational authorities and planning commissions; cooperation and consultation with Federal and State Planning agencies on matters pertaining to recreational area studies and programs. Supervision over Regional Recreational Planners in the Recreational Area Study.

"Long Range Planning"

Aid the Assistant Regional Directors in the coordination of activities relating to master plans and Recreational Study.


Under supervision of Regional Assistant Director, is responsible for office management, including personnel and records, fiscal and accounting, pay rolls, mail and files, travel vouchers, procurement, and project, and job allotments.


Inspectors in the various states or other outlying districts are the administrative representatives of the Region and will carry on the administrative direction and control of all matters concerned with the Region in their area, reporting directly to the Regional Director. All persons assigned to an Inspector's office are under his control.


The principal technical representatives in the Region, such a [sic] Regional Engineer, Regional Landscape Architect, Regional Architect, Regional Forester, Regional Historian, Regional Wildlife Technician, Regional Geologist, etc., will each exercise technical direction of the subordinate employees in their particular branch and will direct the work of these subordinates and be responsible for it. They will have no other duties except representing the technical phase of their branch unless additional duties are assigned to them by the Regional Director.

The Director's instructions of August 6 place administrative control of technicians assigned to regions in the Regional Director.

The relationship between the Regional Director and the regional technicians shall correspond to that existing in the Washington Office between the Director and the heads of the Washington Office Branches.

Travel and programs of region technicians are subject to detailed approval in the Regional Office. Itineraries covering proposed field trips will be submitted in detail together with justification of the need for each item in the itinerary not less than forty-eight hours before the proposed beginning of the trip, for presentation to the Regional Director through the Assistant Regional Director in charge of operations.

The Director's memorandum of August 6 is quoted as follows:

"The Regional Director shall coordinate the travel of the Technicians in this Region. He shall advise the superintendent or custodian as far in advance as possible regarding a contemplated visit of Regional personnel to his park or monument.

"The personnel of the Regional Offices assigned to a particular national park or monument area shall work under the administrative direction of the superintendent or coordinating superintendent, if one has been designated, of that park or monument. This procedure shall also apply to all areas which have been placed under the administrative supervision of a superintendent. In all other areas administered by the Service assigned office personnel shall continue to be under the administrative direction of the Regional Director."

The requirement of advising superintendents and custodians in advance of visit is to be strictly complied with, as also is the requirement that technicians when in a national park or monument shall work under the administrative direction of the person in charge of that area.


The initiation of any investigation of a proposed new park or monument area must emanate from the Director, who will instruct either the Regional Director or designate some other especially qualified official to handle such investigation. He will advise the Regional Director of the contemplated investigation and, if considered advisable, will request the Regional Director, or a representative of his office, to accompany the investigating party. Copies of all communications regarding a proposed new area shall be sent to the proper Regional Director. In no case will persons assigned to such duties make public any opinion or recommendation, or commitment prior to approval of their report by the Director in Washington.


The Regional Director, the Associate Regional Director, and the Assistant Regional Directors are to sign all communications except those relating to routine matters. There are certain types of correspondence and official papers which only the Regional Director shall sign, and, where not specifically covered in this memorandum, good judgment will indicate in individual cases where his signature is essential. To effect an orderly and expeditious handling of such papers, and until further notice, these shall be prepared for signatures of officials of the office as follows:


Communications involving Service policy, particularly where new policy or construction of old policies is involved.

Communications to the Director, except as noted under "Associate Regional Director" and "Assistant Regional Directors."

Communications to heads of other bureaus and of independent offices.

Communications to Senators and Congressmen.

Important communications regarding finances, accounts, and general determination of allotment of funds.

Correspondence concerning projected or newly-authorized National Park Service Areas.

Important communications relating to parkway projects.

All correspondence with National Parks and Monuments.

All other important correspondence on which, by the very nature of the subject matter, the Regional Director s signature should appear.


Last Modified: Tues, Mar 14 2000 07:08:48 am PDT

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