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Manuscript Group 135
GEORGE H. WIRT PAPERS
1878-1959 (bulk 1914-1959)
2.5 cu. ft.


Papers of George H. Wirt (b. 1880, d. 1961), Pennsylvania's first state forester; Director of the State Forest Academy at Mont Alto, 1903-1910; and chief forest fire warden in the Department of Forestry and later the Department of Forests and Waters, 1915-1946. Included are correspondence, rough notes, magazines and booklets, brochures, newspaper clippings, as well as transcripts of letters, reports, etc. Most of the material relates to the life and career of Joseph T. Rothrock (b. 1839, d. 1922), "The Father of Forestry" in Pennsylvania; the Pennsylvania Conservation Education Laboratory for Teachers, established in 1945; and the general development of forestry in Pennsylvania, including the policies and programs of the Department of Forest and Waters, the Pennsylvania State Forest Commission, and their predecessors. In addition to retained copies of letters by Wirt, the correspondence includes letters from Harry A. Rothrock, son of J. T. Rothrock; Mira Lloyd Dock, member of the State Forestry Reservation Commission, 1901-1913; Robert Y. Stuart, secretary of the Department of Forests and Waters, 1923-1927; Governor Gifford Pinchot, who appointed Wirt to the Joseph T. Rothrock Memorial Commission in 1923; and many others. A number of letters are concerned with former Governor Pinchot's attack in 1942 on what he termed "destructive lumbering" in Pennsylvania's state forests; included are copies of letters from Pinchot, as well as Wirt's expression of his own views on this matter. Among the other types of material noted above are transcripts of writings on forestry and conservation, including correspondence, by J. T. Rothrock, 1897-1906; copies of biographical articles on Rothrock written by Wirt, 1939-1942; a 17-page copy of an article by Wirt, "History of Forestry in Pennsylvania;" and a rough compilation, occupying most of one notebook, of chronological listings, beginning 1669, which Wirt made on the history of forestry.




PA State Archives Hours, Directions, & Fees Research Topics Finding Aids for Collections Land Records