October 16, 1931 – JSA to Belle Moskovitz

  • October 16, 1931 – JSA to Belle Moskowitz

My Dear Mrs. Moskowitz:

You or Mr. Moses might be interested in knowing that Dr. Henry B. Ward, Chairman of the Committee on Conservation of the Izaak Walton League, also a well known professor of the University of Illinois, has just offered for publication to the Outdoor of America, an article answering one that appeared in the last issue, by Professor Nelson Cortland Brown, for several years Acting Dean of Forestry at Syracuse. The article will state in part:

            A careful analysis of the text of the amendment proposed to carry out the plan disclosed a provision clearly contrary to the policies of the League and to the general principles of conservation. …Such a scope for buying would unduly favor private interests who could sell their land to the State for reforestation and thus free themselves from taxes while waiting for the next crop of pulp wood to be produced at their very door; the unlimited sale of “wood products” and “Other materials” would cover the sale of manufactured wood products and (under the terms of “other materials”) would permit the sale of “hydro-electric,” “water-power,” “natural gas,” “crude oil,” etc. Placing such power in the hands of any commission is not only dangerous but fundamentally opposed to good public policy.

            Under these circumstances, approval cannot be given to the amendment as it stands. Members of the League and conservationists in New York State are urged to vote against the present amendment and to secure later the submission of one properly worded which will achieve for the people of the commonwealth the results properly sought for in the present plan.

The map, showing graphically the distribution of lands throughout the State needing reforestation as reported by the Commission, is being prepared for photographic purposes, but it is doubtful if the proof can be had before Monday or Tuesday of next week. It will, however, be pushed as fast as is possible, and I will endeavor to attend the meeting as you suggest, at the City Club on Monday, and be available for any talks you may care to have with me before or after the meeting. Indeed, I hope you will feel free to ask me to come to New York at any hour for such assistance as I may be able to give in this connection.

Sincerely yours,