Page images
PDF
EPUB

Forest Fires. •

The first fire was caused by sparks from a saw

mill a mile from Cortez. Clark, Kizer & Kipp's WING to the frequent rains in the early big sawmill, 200 feet away, was also burnt.

spring, it was thought that the annually.' Stroudsburg, Pa., April 30.-Forest fires were

recurring spring forest fires might be lim- ; burning on the timber tract on the mountain back ited in number and severity, but during the latter of Tannersville. part of April and early in May serious forest fires Oil City, April 30.–Forest fires raged in Veoccurred in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York nango County at several points. A portion of and other States, doing immense damage, destroy- | the Oil City Fair and Trotting Association building valuable property and timber, and also the ings were destroyed to-day. forest cover, injuring the trees, etc., which were Coudersport, Pa., May 1.-Over a million dolnot destroyed. Thousands of acres of forests lars' worth of property has been destroyed, at were burned in various sections of Pennsylvania least one life has been lost, as a result of awful and New Jersey, the statement being made in the forest fires moved by a terrific wind. The large press that a stretch of 100 miles in a nearly contin- saw and planing-mill of the Lackawanna Lumber uous strip had been burned over in the southern Company has been burned, together with a quanportion of the latter State. The losses in the oil tity of lumber, entailing a loss of $1,000,000. regions of Pennsylvania from forest fires are said There were 14,000,000 feet of sawed hemlock to have been over $1,000,000.

and pine lumber in the yards, all of which was Some excerpts are given below from the daily destroyed. So rapid was the advance of the fire press which show the tremendous loss from forest that a force of men who had remained near the fires, which, if they cannot be prevented, should, mill were hemmed in and narrowly escaped with at least, be lessened, and those causing them their lives. promptly punished.

Among the property burned were 30 cars of the Bradford, Pa., April 30.—The worst forest fires Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad Company loaded in the history of this section of Pennsylvania with lumber, and 30 empty cars. Several miles raged to-night, and $1,000,000 worth of prop- of track are destroyed. erty has been destroyed.

Williamsport, Pa., May 1.-The forest fires In the district where the fire raged a large num- raging in this and adjoining counties did inestimaber of oil-wells were located. On both sides of ble damage. A sawmill on Lawshe's Run was the railway the woods were a mass of flames, burned this morning, as was also a large quantity of which swept over an area of 2 miles, taking sawed lumber and 60,000,000 feet of logs. The everything in their path. The people of the loss is estimated at $50,000. The flames were town were rescued by a special train being run driven by a terrific wind that rendered the work as far as Davis City. Several buildings were of the fire fighters useless. Fire swept the terriburned.

tory between Big and Little Pine Creeks. There Fires were reported from all sections, and a was a continuous band of fire from Waterville to number of lumber camps and chemical factories Jersey Mills, the flames traveling as fast as a race were reported as being in ashes.

horse. In the vicinity of Stokesdale 1,000,000 The hills surrounding Mount Jewett were on feet of logs were destroyed to-day. fire, and the smoke was so dense and the heat so Pottsville, Pa., May 1.-Immense forest fires intense in the town that people walking about the destroyed $75,000 worth of timber here to-day. streets were obliged to wear dampened cloths over The leaves and old timber were piled five feet their faces.

high, and the flames from this inflammable mateAt Campbelltown, on the B. R. & P. Railroad, rial leaped 60 feet in the air and swept all before it. a barn was burned and many rigs destroyed.

The section foremen and all their gangs on the There was a big fire west of Marshburg.

Minehill division of the Philadelphia & Reading At Simpson, in the heart of the oil-field, the Railway were summoned out to fight the fire at fire destroyed hundreds of thousands of dollars' | Beckville. Foxes, rabbits and other game were worth of property. It covered an area of 2 | also forced from cover. miles and spread so rapidly that scarcely anything Hanover, Pa., May 1.-Fire started near in its path escaped. Oil-derricks, tanks and Buena Vista, in the South Mountain, yesterday steam-boxes all went.

afternoon, and spread so rapidly during the night Punxsutawney, April 30.–Forest fires raged in that hundreds of acres of timber were consumed. the vicinity of Cortez, a lumbering town near Hammonton, N. J., April 30.—A fire, caused here, and nearly 1000 persons were employed by sparks from a locomotive at East Hammonton, fighting the fire.

burned from East Hammonton to Nesco and on

toward Pleasant Mills, a distance of 8 miles and | very grateful for anything whatever you please to 2 miles wide.

give me. Superintendent Lovell, of the West Jersey & I have battled through this world so far, and Seashore Railroad, brought all section men from now I am getting old and beg of you for God's all points between Atlantic City and Hammonton sake and the love of man to help me out. If to fight the fire. All available men and boys able you want to know what for man I am, write me to handle a shovel were in the woods fighting the and I will send you a sworn statement if you fire.

want it from responsible men. Plattsburg, N. Y., May 1.-A heavy snow- Please write me and tell me what you will or storm set in over the Adirondacks to-day, practi- can do. I will have the satisfaction of knowing, cally checking the fierce forest fires that have anyhow. Just fancy in your own mind a man spread rapidly in the last week.

with a big family and everything he has got The Hotel St. Armand, at Saranac Lake vil burned in a day or two. This may be the first lage, has been destroyed and the fence and build case of this kind that ever was in this State ; but ings of the driving park were burned.

I am in need badly and feel as though I ought to

be helped. Montreal, Quebec, May 1.-Extensive forest

Yours very respectfully, fires raged about 50 miles north of here, between the towns of St. Jovite and La Belle. The flames reached the Canadian Pacific Railroad line and the more inhabited portion of the Laurentian district. The village of Morrison, containing a mill

Fifty Dollars Reward ! and about a dozen farmhouses, was entirely destroyed, and the flames were so severe on both

TTTHE Commissioner of Forestry, in view of sides of the railroad track that cars were badly

the numerous fires occurring from day to scorched.

. day upon State Reservation and other

forest lands, desires to call attention to the reWe print the following, as a sample of the ex- ward of fifty dollars offered, under the provisions tremity to which forest fires have reduced more of the Act of Assembly of June ut, 1879, to than one family in this State. There is no ex- the prosecutor, for the conviction of any person cuse for such fires. They always come from who shall wantonly and wilfully kindle any fire ignorance, carelessness or crime, and in either so that any woodlands, barrens or moors are case merit prompt punishment. The Forestry thereby set on fire. Department is doing all in its power to bring the This reward is payable out of the county treasoffenders to justice, but too often fails to receive ury by the commissioners of the county wherein the support of those who know of the origin of the conviction is had. these fires, and by whose testimony conviction

J. T. ROTHROCK. could be secured. Meanwhile, what can be done to help this sufferer ?

J. T. ROTHROCK,
Department of Forestry, Harrisburg, Pa.

Arbor Day.
May 18, 1903.

PRIL 3d and April 17th were proclaimed Hon. Governor of the State of Pennsylvania : 4 Arbor Days by Governor Pennypacker,

Sir :-I here make an appeal to the govern - being generally observed throughout the ment of this State for help on account of forest State, the day which was best suited to the local. fire. I am destroyed. I am a poor man and ity being selected. trying to make an honest living. I have had 172 In Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Society of miles of fence burnt; the fire killed all my small Colonial Dames planted about sixty trees at timber and I have no big timber. Neither have Stenton, one being a slip from the old Charter I any buildings, and not $1.00 to buy a sack of Oak, of Hartford, Conn. Addresses were made four with.

by John Birkinbine, President of the PennsylvaThere were men looking at my property to-day nia Forestry Association, Dr. S. J. Schmucker, and they said my loss at least would amount to of the West Chester Normal School, and Andrew $2000. It is enough to put a man out of his Wright Crawford, Recording Secretary of the mind, especially one that has tried as hard to get City Parks' Association. along as I have. I really don't know what to do In many of the public schools Arbor Day was if the State don't help me some. I would be observed by special exercises arranged by principals and teachers, with the purpose of inculcat- leased or sold, but should be held for the use of ing love of trees, plants and flowers in the hearts the public and for individuals who should be aland minds of the pupils, and in suburban and lowed to occupy such sites free of charge, but other schools, where possible, the lesson was given who should be restricted in their occupancy to a practical application by the planting of trees the use of tents. and vines.

I 2. That where the timber along the shores of a The principals of the five special schools for lake or traveled stream has been killed by the truant and backward children arranged for the backflow of a State dam, these dead and unplanting of trees, vines or seeds by the pupils, in sightly stubs should be removed, and that reasontree-boxes or in the playgrounds where this was able appropriations be made from time to time possible, and stated that perhaps no public school | for such purpose. children more thoroughly enjoyed or entered 3. That the appropriations for the protection with greater spirit into the work.

of the State forests from fire be increased so as to The following letter from Newtown, Bucks Co., permit of the employment of patrols, and a more gives a description of the Arbor Day exercises complete service in this respect. there :

4. That a liberal sum of money be granted an“ The Arbor Day exercises, at the Newtown | nually to carry on the work of reforesting the Public School,' reflected great credit on the burned or denuded lands in the preserve, and for Principal, Mr. Hoffman, and his assistants. the maintenance of the State nurseries in which

The essays, songs and recitations of the pupils forest tree seedlings can be propagated and furwere replete with knowledge of the variety, nished to carry on such work. utility, beauty and sentiment of trees.

5. That in addition to the two expert foresters “The information thus gained in youth will do now in the employ of the commission two more much towards retaining their interest in the future be provided for in the annual appropriation or preservation of our woodlands, and form a strong supply-bill, thereby increasing the number to four. link in the successful work of 'Forestry.'

6. That in view of the large number of people “The scholars contributed a fine specimen of who visit the Adirondacks each summer, and the Norway Maple, which was planted in the name immense revenue derived from this source, the of 'Roosevelt.'"

necessity for protecting the great water-shed of At Doylestown, Pa., the fifth annual memorial northern New York, and the benefit derived from service was held on the grounds of National Farm the climatic and sanitary functions of the forests, School, on May ist.

advantages which are dependent solely on preserThe special feature of the ceremony was the vation of wooded conditions, the policy of acconsecrating of trees in memory of departed quiring more land as an addition to the preserve friends and supporters of the school, addresses should be continued, and that purchases of forest being made by a number of prominent speakers. lands in the Adirondacks and Catskills should be

These are only a few notices which might be promptly made whenever the property is offered indefinitely increased.

at a reasonable price.

The committee also visited the College Forest

of Cornell University, and in the report quesReport of the Adirondack Committee. tions the wisdom of the course pursued. Briefly,

they claim that 1500 acres have been denuded in THE Special Committee of the Legislature of three years, that the theory is to obliterate the

the State of New York, appointed in 1902 forest by cutting different sections annually and

to visit the Adirondacks, examine the replanting, but only 275 acres have been reState property and report to the Assembly of planted, the remainder being strewn with brush 1903, have just published their report. They and débris, making the fire risk very hazardous. visited the Adirondacks, and from careful obser They state that if it was necessary to remove the vations and investigation made the following trees, in order to substitute a better class of timber, recommendations :

it would have been better to burn it off, thus 1. That the necessary legal provisions be made saving the money which it is claimed is being lost in to enable the State to grant small leases of Adi- carrying out the lumber contract, requesting that rondack land to campers and cottagers and avail the existing contract be canceled, and the work itself of the large revenues obtainable from this of removing the old forests be stopped, the ef source; that such leases should have a frontage forts being directed for a period to the manage on lakes or streams not to exceed 400 feet in ment of nurseries for seedlings and the replant length, and that the alternate sites should not being of waste-places.

It is not the purpose or desire of FOREST LEAVES for promoting practical work by the distribution to pass upon the committee's report, but its pub of seedling trees, etc. We certainly wish the lication will evidently have the effect of bringing association every success in its endeavor. about a discussion of different methods of forest treatment, which will be to the advantage of the President Roosevelt on Forest Presercountry.

vation. A sure sign of the progress which forestry has made is shown in the care and attention given to IN April, President Roosevelt spent several this subject by the New York Legislature, and 1 weeks in the Yellowstone National Park, the report of the committee evidences, through

and when he left on April 24th made an out, an intelligent appreciation of the value of address in which the national wonders of the forests and anxiety for their preservation and park were mentioned, as well as the necessity of care.

preserving the forests and its denizens. The folForestry in Massachusetts.

lowing extract in regard to forest preservation is

of interest : ITTHE Massachusetts Forestry Association en

“The preservation of the forests is, of course, deavored to secure the passage of the fol

the matter of prime importance in maintaining a

preserve of this character. Congress has not in lowing act by the Legislature of that State:

recent years done anything more important than An Act to Establish the Office of State Forester.

passing the Irrigation bill, and nothing more esSECTION 1. Be it enacted, etc., That a State sential to the preservation of the water-supply Forester shall be appointed by the Governor and that they make is the preservation of the Council to serve for three years, or until his suc- forests. Montana has in its water-power a cessor be chosen and qualified.

source of development which has hardly been Sec. 2. The State Forester shall have full power touched. This water-power will be seriously imand authority to do all acts that in his judgment paired if ample protection is not given the forests. may assist in the promotion of woodland and road Therefore, this park, like the forest reserves genside tree-growth, and in the protection and im erally, is of the utmost advantage to the country provement of the forests of the Commonwealth, around, from the merely utilitarian side. But, of whether owned by the State or by individuals; course, this park also, because of its peculiar but in no event shall he have power to interfere | features, is to be reserved as a beautiful playwith any other State or town officer, or do any | ground. act which shall affect the rights of any individual. |

“ Here all the wild creatures of the old days Sec. 3. Said Forester shall receive a salary of are being preserved, and their overflow into the one hundred dollars a month and his actual ex surrounding country means that the people of the penses.

surrounding country, so long as they see that the Sec. 4. To carry out the purposes of this act laws are observed by all, will be able to insure to there may be expended annually a sum not exceed themselves and to their children and to their ing five thousand dollars.

children's children much of the old time pleasSec. 5. The State Forester shall annually, on ure of the hardy life of the wilderness and of the or before the ist of January, make a written re hunter in the wilderness.” port to the Governor of his doings in respect to the duties herein assigned to him, together with a The South Spring Ranch and Cattle Company, detailed statement of the expenses incurred in which owns a big ranch near Roswell, in the Pecos carrying out these duties, and such recommenda River Valley, New Mexico, wants to raise trees tions as may be deemed proper.

on a part of its irrigated lands, both for fenceSec. 6. The State Forester shall be subject in posts and for shade and ornamental purposes. all matters to the control of that division of the The Bureau of Foresty made a plan for 450 acres. State Board of Agriculture which has charge of The trees to be planted for fence-posts will be forestry interests.

hardy catalpa ; those to be planted for shade and Sec. 7. This act shall take effect on its passage. ornament will be hardwoods, such as black walnut,

Unfortunately, the bill was not passed, although pecan, green ash, basswood, horse-chestnut, white this is hoped for next year. In the meantime, the elm and sycamore. There is no timber in this Massachusetts Forestry Association is trying to part of New Mexico except the cottonwoods raise a fund of $3000 for the purpose of employ that are planted there. Fence-posts of sabine ing a forester to work under the direction of the cedar, from the canyons of western Texas, are executive committee during the coming year, and shipped in, and cost 15 cents to 20 cents apiece.

Forest Growth at Wildwood, N. J. In one instance, two hollies are embracing and

slowly killing a red cedar, several of the dead ITILDWOOD forest, using a dignified term limbs of which have been surrounded by the V for a remarkable growth of trees and trunks of the hollies. Here are numerous exam

shrubs, is part of the thicket-formation ples of tree-contention. The limbs of the hollies on Five-mile Beach, constituted by the association are matted and zigzag. The trees are full of of the following arborescent species : Juniperus limb-holes, favorite resting-places for fickers. Virginiana, L.;* Prunus maritima, Wang.; Quer- The forest was at one time very dense and the cus minor (Marsh), Sarg.; Quercus alba, L.; Quer- underbrush a mass of green briars. Freak trees cus minor (Marsh), Sarg.; Myrica cerifera, L.; are abundant. The “ Siamese Twins," two monSassafras Sassafras (L.), Karst.; Nyssa sylvatica, ster hollies, grow up to a height of sixty-five feet. Marsh ; Magnolia Virginiana, L.; Acer rubrum, About fifteen feet from the ground, years ago, a L.; Prunus serotina, Ehrh.; Quercus digitata branch nearly a foot in diameter grew out from (Marsh), Sudw., and Vitis Labrusca, L. The one tree and into the other, solidly joining them. grapevines which grow here reach a foot in diam- " Crookedness" is a cedar tree which has aseter, and are true lianes. Upon the ground, usu- sumed a most fantastic shape. “Before Columally in the sandy open places, abound Cassia bus" is a huge red cedar nearly three feet in dichamacrista, L.; Strophostyles helvola (L.), Brit ameter, fifty feet high, with gnarled branches. ton; Solidago odora, Ait.; Solidago fistulosa, 1 “Methusaleh” is another huge cedar tree; Mill.; Panicum amarum, Ell.; Eupatorium hys Contwisted” is a name given by painted signsopifolium, L.; Willughbæa (Mikania) scandens board to two large trees, with trunks one and (L.), Kuntze ; Lespedeza capitata, Michx.; Ly one-half feet in diameter, twisted about each copus sinuatus, Ell.; Lippia lanceolata, Michx.; other. “ Laocoon" appropriately describes an Ambrosia artemisiafolia, L.; near the railroad, oak tree supporting an enormous grapevine, Vitis Helianthus giganteus, L.; Meibomia paniculata Labrusca, L. The stem of this liane is as thick (L.), Kuntze, with many other other species, | as a man's leg. Many of the larger trees, espemost native, some introduced.

cially the red maples, are draped with long fesThere are many peculiar growths in this forest toons of the lichen Usnea barbata, reminding one due, it seems, to a combination of causes. Vigor of the live oaks of the south draped with the gray and density of growth are due to a mild, moist Florida moss, Tillandsia usneoides, L. climate and a soft, moist soil, which Wildwood is

JOHN W. HARSHBERGER. known to possess. Strong winds and the work of | [The two views were taken by Mr. J. B. Rich, cattle, no doubt, in part account for the close, of Philadelphia. The first one gives an idea of jagged growths which are common at this seaside the general character of the forest, with a holly resort. Cattle, for many years, ran wild on this and two white oaks in the foreground, while other island, which, two hundred and thirty-nine years oaks and hollies appear in the distance. The ago, Charles II. of England granted to his brother second illustration of a cedar and two holly trees James, Duke of York, March 12, 1664. The last shows the way in which branches of the cedar run of these wild herds were shot only a few years through or are surrounded by the holly trees, the ago. They, in probability, roamed unmolested branches of the cedar in some instances projectsince the great native chiefs, Hohan Topatrapan- ing six or eight feet from the holly tree. —ED.] ning, Hohan Kepanectamto, Takamony and Mothant Takomis, by deed perfected the title in

The City Parks' Association of Philadelphia the white grantees of the King, March 30, 1688.

has just issued its Fifteenth Annual Report, Part. Or, they may have roamed, since the time, when

II., advocating the prompt securing of numerous fifty-two whalers lived here, one hundred and

playgrounds, squares, circles and triangular parks, thirty-five years ago. However, the cattle came,

under one acre in extent, in various sections of they influenced, to a considerable extent, the char

the city, stating where these might be located; acter of the growth by trampling through the groves

illustrations showing the areas which are suggested and eating the tops and buds of the younger tree

for small parks or playgrounds, while still other vegetation. As a result, it is not uncommon to

views, taken in various cities, are pictures of what find two hollies grown together, or a limb of

has been already accomplished there with similar one grown fast to another holly, or one limb

areas. Quite a number of these suggested parks uniting with another limb of the same tree, or

are located close to schools, where they could be joining the trunk, so as to form “jug-handles.”

used by the pupils as playgrounds, and in sum* The names are according to Britton's Manual of

mer, when the schools are closed, by the general Botany.

public.

« PreviousContinue »