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MEETING OF THOSE INTERESTED IN TIMBER LAND FIRE
HE meeting was held in Albany, N. Y., on January 21, 1918, and
was called to order by Mr. George N. Ostrander, Chairman, at 12 noon. Present: Messrs. Cutting, Meigs, Ostrander, Adams,
Allen, Tryon, de Carteret, Howard, Wilber and Recknagel. Mr. Ostrander explained the purpose of meeting and called on Mr. de Carteret for statement of his plans.
Mr. de Carteret stated that during the period of the war they will not make an aggressive campaign for new business, but will accept what comes voluntarily; will re-insure the policies now in force; will eliminate all office expenses and all examinations—an affidavit taking place of the latter.
As far as New York State is concerned the legal obstacles prevent soliciting business, but they will accept risks voluntarily offered and reinsure same with those they have already.
Mr. Ostrander: An opportunity for our timberland owners to study this question and determine (a) Whether it would be of financial advantage to them. (b) Whether the establishment of the fact of insurance be not desirable—whether we should not support the proposition of timber land insurance. Will be of advantage in marketing bond issues and other financial transactions.
Mr. Cutting agreed with Mr. Ostrander's views and felt that insurance would also help in securing mortgages on timberland.
Mr. de Carteret: Statistics of losses in New York State furnished by Mr. Howard showed conditions more favorable than in New England. Inquiry has shown that Stock Companies will write insurance at 1 per cent. Such insurance would be free from all contingent liability of policy holders, which members of Mutual Companies have.
Mr. Ostrander: Could not a large corporation borrow its money at I per cent less if protected by insurance than otherwise?
Mr. Meigs: It is the other elements which make fire insurance profitable—those that do not burn pay you for those that do. Mr, de Carteret: If you figure your insurance and
ceived more in settlements than you have paid in premiums, the insurance company will raise the premium or go broke.
Mr. Ostrander: This is the time to be thinking over the proposition . Can slashed land be insured ?
Mr. de Carteret: No insurance written on slashed area.
Mr. Wilber: Is mutual innsurance more desirable than stock company if latter is cheaper ?
Mr. de Carteret: Yes, since there is a come back, tho' latter is problematical.
We write $5,000 on any tract which is separated by a mile from another which is insured. The area 640 acres need not be a square—but any shape. This insurance can be spread over the intervening timber if desired-e. g. in a tract 36 square miles in area, six square miles can each be insured up to $5,000, or a total of $30,000 insurance, or the same amount could be written over the whole 36 square miles. Additional insurance up to full value of whole area can be acquired in stock companies.
Mr. Ostrander: How is slash insured ?
Mr. de Carteret: Unmerchantable timber is insured at so much per acre—so also plantations—merchantable timber is ad valorem-80 much
Mr. Howard : Can insurance be placed on small stuff after merchantable stuff removed?
Mr. de Carteret: Yes, at so much per acre.
Mr. Wilber: If you take a mile square of merchantable timber on which there are 25 acres burned over, how will that be paid?
Mr. de Carteret: At so much per thousand up to the amount insured. That is why merchantable timber is insured on basis of value per thousand, because value varies from acre to acre.
In addition to planting cost (in plantations) can insure accrued interest also at 5 per cent compound.
Mr. Meigs: Is there a co-insurance clause?
Mr. de Carteret: Yes, 90 per cent. Our maximum line is $5,000. We can re-insure in stock companies at I per cent premium.
Mr. Cutting: When virgin timberland is burned, the salvage is large - there is an extra cost of logging too.
Mr. de Carteret: Yes, spruce can stand for 3 years after fire.
whereas pine must be logged immediately to prevent damage by borers.
Mr. Howard: Can young growth and merchantable timber be insured separately?
Mr. de Carteret: Timber without young growth: not vice versa. We will not send out canvassers for new insurance. In New York we can not solicit, but can accept business that comes. Can not get a license until admitted in New York and can't be admitted in New York until we have done business in our home State for five years.
Mr. Recknagel: Do you advise our owners to take this up with you or with stock companies direct?
Mr. de Carteret: With our company, since stock companies will accept risks endorsed by our company more readily than otherwise. Will gladly furnish forms and give advice in getting data in shape. Application should be made to Timber Lands Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Portsmouth, N. H.
Agreed that these minutes be sent out to all timber land owners in the State for their information and such action as they desired to take.
Adjournment 1 p. m.
Proposed At the Albany meetSummer ing in January the Excursion suggestion was made to Axton that in place of a Plantations formal indoor meet
ing of our Association next Summer, a trip be organized to some place of special forestry interest in New York State. The early plantations of the former New York State College of Forestry, near Axton in the Adirondacks furnish a wonderful object lesson in practical forestry as some of our illustrations attest. If such a trip could be organized under the leadership of Dr. Fernow, who established the plantations, or of Prof. Roth of Michigan, his colleague, it would be a long step towards bringing the aesthetic and practical interests closer together.
Axton is conveniently located for such a meeting. A rendezvous could be had at Wawbeek on Upper Saranac Lake, with dinner at Hiawatha Lodge nearby. Those owning automobiles would find good roads all the way: their less fortunate brethren could go by rail to Tupper Lake and thence take autos to Wawbeek.
Why not meet for this trip on Labor Day, Monday, September 2, 1918?
It will be the anniversary of a similar trip by a group of eastern foresters last summer. This trip, known as the “Axton Conference," was arranged by Canadian foresters who are interested in a study of similar lands in
Quebec. It has been written up by Prof. Ralph C. Bryant of the Yale School of Forestry in the November Number of the “Journal of Forestry." We are in a position to furnish reprints of the article to all those interested. It would serve as a guide to our proposed trip this fall. We quote one part of Prof. Bryant's article: “Even now many regard the college experiments as a failure, while as a matter of fact time has shown the policy to have been right. There is no better vindication of Dr. Fernow's policy than the present condition of the logged-off areas near Wawbeek. All plantations which were made under 12 different conditions have proved entirely satisfactory."
Are you a doubting Thomas?
Do you want to learn a few points about practical forestry? want to know what established pianta. tions dating back to 1899 look like?
Then come and take a "look see."
Annual Meetings of the Association ?
An Association with a mailing list of 631 which cannot muster more than a corporal's guard at its meetings, can hardly be called Aourishing.
In Canada they put us to shame with their mid-winter attendance of the Canadian Forestry Association.
In Pennsylvania and in Massachusetts there is a better spirit shown by the Forestry Association of each State.
Is there any reason for this? Are the problems in New York less interesting, less vital, are patriotic?
Or perhaps this very patriotism will be urged as the reason for staying away from our meetings so as to attend to matters of seemingly greater importance.
If this is the reason for your apathy read what President Drinker of the
Pennsylvania Forestry Association says:
"Started thirty years ago partly from a love of the forest and partly from an appreciation by far-sighted men of the need of reproducing our cut woodlands, it is evident now that forestry supports a most important phase of a national preparedness movement, and when we realize how great the need will be for lumber, not only during, but still more, after the close of the war,-in the rebuilding and rehabitation of
transportation and industrial facilities, we see that this is no time for the lessening of an active intelligent interest in forestry, nor for feeling that our support of forestry associations, and national and state forestry organizations and their work, should lessen or go into abeyance during the war."
Now is emphatically not the time for apathy and discouragement.
Open at all Times to Members for the Expression of Their Opinions. Contributed articles and communications to "Viewpoints" welcomed. The editors and the
Association, however, are not responsible for any of the views expressed by contributors.
MR. J. P. KINNEY, Chief Supervisor of Forests of the U. S. Indian Office, writes as follows:
"I expect every week that we will have vacancies in positions of scaler which we must fill temporarily. Because of the fact that the Civil Service
registers are exhausted these temporary positions will in many cases mean employment for six months, a year, or even longer.
“I would like to have ‘on tap' the names of good men that we could put in these positions. Men who are past