« ПретходнаНастави »
To his Excellency the Governor and the Honorable Council:
The New Hampshire Forestry Commission, presenting its first biennial* report, takes occasion to notice a marked increase in popular interest in forestry throughout the state. This is indicated by the enlarged popular demand for the publications of the Board and the increasing attention devoted to the subject by numerous organizations for the promotion of our agricultural, manufacturing, and social interests. Still more significant is the interest in forest preservation which recently has been manifested for the first time by several of the large manufacturing corporations which make use of the water power of the Merrimack valley. These corporations, having experienced large losses by the disastrous floods of the last two years, apparently now concur with the conclusions of every forestry commission in respect to the danger attending rapid deforestation.
The educational work of the commission since the publication of its last report has not varied in character from that therein described. By the frequent publication of newspaper and other articles dealing with the different phases of the forestry problem, attempt has been made to enlighten the public with regard to the general principles which underlies forestry, and the inevitable effects which the continuation of existing conditions must produce in New Hampshire.
*This is the sixth forestry report published under the auspices of the state of New Hampshire, the previous issues having been that of the temporary commission appointed in 1881, and reporting in 1885; of the temporary commission appointed in 1889, and reporting in 1891 and 1893, and the annual reports of the present permanent commission published in 1893 and 1894. All of these publications are out of print, except the report for 1894, a limited number of this issue being still in hand. They may be had by addressing the secretary of the Forestry Commission, Concord, N. H.
In accordance with the provisions of the statute the commission has held “meetings from time to time in different parts of the state for the discussion of forestry subjects.” Several organizations courteously have extended opportunities to the commission for presenting these subjects to large audiences in different parts of the state, among them being the State Board of Agriculture, Pomona and subordinate granges throughout the state, the State Board of Trade, local boards of trade, the officers of the Grange State Fair, and several organizations embraced in the membership of the State Federation of Woman's Clubs. Occasional addresses upon forestry have been made by the secretary of the commission before some of the public schools, several teachers' institutes, and a few woman's clubs. An unmistakable result is the gradual extension among all classes of our citizens of interest in, and desire for, the preservation of our forests. But such educational efforts of the commission cannot be continuous, nor without aid from others can they be wholly adequate, and it therefore is deemed proper to renew the suggestion made in our last report, that the New Hampshire College of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts should immediately find some means for establishing a course of instruction in practical forestry. Not only do the permanent interests of this commonwealth, as then set forth, demand such a course, but the college, with its enlarged opportunities for specialization, by introducing it might become one of the most important and helpful agencies in New England in carrying on this work. Such undertaking is clearly within its province, and, when measured by the practical good which might result to the state, the study of forestry is not secondary to any of the subjects now embraced in the curriculum of the college. Though earnestly sought, no satisfactory method has yet been found for bringing forestry to the attention of the public schools of the state. The only present available method of doing this without materially increasing the burden of either teachers or pupils apparently is to provide for a more frequent introduction of forestry topics in the programmes of teachers' institutes, which are held in all the counties of the state, and also in the programmes of the two summer schools which are already established in New Hampshire.
The educational efforts of the commission, however, have not been confined to arousing a general interest in forestry, or to presenting the subject in populous towns. Within the past two years this educational campaign has been carried into the woods, among lumbermen, both owners and operators. As a result of these endeavors it is now possible to report that a number of the great lumber operators at work in the state have begun to adopt such methods of harvesting the forest crop as will tend to ensure the perpetuation of the valuable species which are now chiefly in demand. These methods restrict lumber operators to the removal of trees not less than ten or twelve inches in diameter at the stump; and they have been adopted for the purpose of fostering the recuperative power of the forest, so as to secure from the same area an endless succession of forest crops. This voluntary adoption of restrictive methods of lumbering on the part of several studious lumbermen, is a recognition of the fact that this commission correctly interpreted the conditions of continued success in lumbering in this state when in its first report it was remarked that, “ Apparently we have reached such a point in the distribution of titles to forest areas that we are not likely to see many more large transfers of timber lands. This means that lumber operators must henceforth confine their cutting to the holdings which they now possess; therefore it behooves them to treat their possessions so as to ensure their perpetual use with profit. This can only be done through the application of forestry principles."
THE PRESENT PROBLEM.
The frank recognition by large operators that the conditions above described must be closely studied as a prerequisite to long-continued success in their business, is a distinct gain. It marks a new phase in the progress of forestry agitation in New Hampshire. The problem among those representative industries which make the largest use of the forest product, namely, the pulp and paper industries, now is how to conserve, direct, and utilize the annual forest crop so as to ensure the successive reproduction of the valuable growth. The forests of New Hampshire occupy about sixty per cent. of the total area of the state, but they form an insignificant portion of the great