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Published Quarterly at Syracuse by the New York State Forestry Association
Entered as second-class matter February 29, 1916, at the post office at
Syracuse, New York, under the act of March 3, 1879
HE forest community is an organization of slow
growth. Serving the Nation's need in peace and
war alike, all safeguards and measures must be
Contributed articles of any length up to 2000 words, and communications to “Viewpoints” are always welcomed. The editors and the Association, however, are not responsible for any of
the views expressed by contributors.
- by Courtesy of the State College of Forestry A stand of mixed hardwoods and conifers in the Adirondacks
By Shirley W. Allen, in Charge of Extension Work at the New York
State College of Forestry
NE striking result of the war in which we are now engaged will
be a demonstration of the value of forests in supplying the
brought to a successful close. We are too apt to think of the forest as producing only the material of which our houses are built, our furniture is made, and possibly the paper upon which our news comes to us, is manufactured. There is, however, an amazing need for the products of the forest in almost every branch of military activity from the building of light, spreading wings for aircraft to the disinfecting of wounds received in battle. One hardly picks up a paper to read the war news without seeing the mention of some forest or wooded position in the day's dispatches, and the parts which French and Belgian forests have played as artillery screens, and strongholds of various kinds, have linked the forest on the western front and the military maneuvers in an extremely vivid manner.
The enormous need for lumber in military operations is the more evident because of the number of Forestry regiments which have been organized, for overseas service, in the United States and Canada. The New England States have sent to England a unit of lumbermen along with portable saw mills and a sufficient number of horses to carry on effective work in England and Scotland. Fine old trees on English estates are being worked up by these men to furnish the one material needed most for trench construction and for bridges. A Forestry regiment, which will go to France as the Tenth Engineers Reserve, is being organized by the United States Forest Service at the request of our Allies, and will do work similar to that of the Ten Mill Units. Professional foresters will officer this regiment, and an oppor
tunity will be given to co-operate with French foresters in a most careful and exhaustive use of the stands of timber in France.
The local value of an organized force, such as exists in the service of a number of our states and in the National Forest Service, can hardly be over-estimated in the case of a national crisis of this sort. Forest officers in the West have for many years been called upon for different kinds of social service in the communities where they have their headquarters. With the passing of early prejudices settlers have begun to look to them for advice and aid. Their knowledge of the country in the case of an invasion would be invaluable to the military branches of the government, and the services which they can render in recruiting, guarding public works, and the like, is further evidence of their value.
“American Forestry” for the last few months has had numerous interesting articles on different angles of forests and forestry in the great war, and one particularly significant instance of the service which trained foresters can render is given as follows:
"Early in the war a British buyer placed a contract here for more than a million rifles. Specifications called for seasoned walnut stocks. Such walnut could not be found, so the contractor turned to green walnut and began to make the rifles, but the green wood cracked and checked to such an extent that there was a ruinous loss of sixty per cent. of the wood. It became imperative to kiln-dry the green walnut. The Forest Service expert was called in and by control of kiln conditions overcame the trouble and reduced the loss from sixty to one per cent.
This government will need hundreds of thousands of rifles. We will not be able to secure even green walnut, except at prohibitive cost, so the new specifications will call, in all probability, for birch, and before the birch can be used, without excessive waste, there will be another problem for the Forest Service expert to solve. Similar problems will arise in the selection of suitable substitutes for the white pine planks now unobtainable, but since time immemorial considered the only wood for pontoons, and in supplying the demand for suitable woods in the manufacture of aeroplane propellers now that the woods considered essential are becoming scarce to the point of exhaustion."
WINDSOR FOREST IN
- by Courtesy of "American Forestry”. WAR TIME
Much has appeared recently in the newspapers, concerning the building of wooden ships to thwart the submarine menace, and, in spite of the fact that the Commission charged with this important work has turned to steel, they expect to use a large number of wooden ships too. This will call for increased quantities of lumber which must be available on extremely short notice.
But, the most interesting phase of war time forest utilization deals with the use of forest products for little known purposes. Explosives, medicines, and even food and clothing are being derived on a commercial scale from wood.
Some explosives, and especially nitrocellulose, or so-called gun cotton, are made through the use of wood fiber almost as successfully as through the use of cotton. The only difference is that in the case of wood fiber the explosive will not keep for so long a period as in the case of cotton. There has been much speculation as to how long Germany could hold out without receiving shipments of cotton from other parts of the world, but the wealth of wood contained in Germany, as a result of long and successful practice of forestry, now ex