Cover image for The Northeast's changing forests
The Northeast's changing forests
Irland, Lloyd C.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Petersham, Mass. : Distributed by Harvard University Press for Harvard Forest, 1999.
Physical Description:
xxiv, 401 pages : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
SD144.A127 I75 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

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Reviews the nature of the American Northeast's forests, their significance and policy issues. The book tells the story of the changing forests of the nine northeastern states, from the original European settlements through the age of shipbuilding to the retreat of farming and regrowth in the 20th century. Emphasizing the continuity of the history and varied uses of the forests, the work summarizes the forces shaping past farming and land abandonment, forest cutting practices, insects, winds, diseases and land development patterns.

Author Notes

Lloyd C. Irland is a consultant based in Winthrop, Maine. He previously served at the USDA Forest Service, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, and in Maine State government. He is a Fellow of The Society of American Foresters.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Irland's book is a valuable presentation of the Northeast's forests past, present, and future. Changes are two-fold: those that the forest has actually undergone in its ecological form and those of public perception and attitudes. Irland, a forest administrator and consultant with experience in government and academia, has written earlier books about New England forests. Although written from a forester's perspective, offering the view that Northeast forests have been revitalized by regeneration of cut-over land and reforestation of farmland, the book is a complete account of the current state of the regions forests and forestry issues. Chapters provide a history and biological description of the Northeast forest, defined as the area of PA and NJ northward; seven metaphors of public concern that further discussions involve; and the five overlapping forests that Irland considers as making up the Northeast forest: industrial, recreational, suburban, wild, and rural. This clearly written and well-illustrated book is for nonforesters but will greatly interest foresters and other natural resource managers, and will be applicable to other areas of the country. Irland summarizes considerable government, economic, and other studies, which, along with data and statistics, are found in sidebars and tables throughout. Chapter references and notes; thorough index. General readers; undergraduates through professionals. D. L. Richter; Michigan Technological University

Table of Contents

Figuresp. xiii
Tablesp. xv
Abbreviationsp. xvii
Prefacep. xix
Forewordp. xxi
Chapter 1. Forests in Northeastern Lifep. 1
Forests: Growing Importance, Changing Meaningsp. 1
Waves of Land Use Changep. 4
The Northeast's Five Forestsp. 8
The Northeastern Regionp. 9
Metaphors about the Forest: Concerns and Policies for the Coming Centuryp. 12
Chapter 2. Forest Landscapes of the Northeastp. 24
Forests of the Mountains: New York and Northern New Englandp. 26
Forests of the Lowlands: Northern New England and New Yorkp. 28
Coastal Forestsp. 34
Forests of the Lowlands: Southern New England to Southeastern Pennsylvaniap. 36
Forests of the Ridges and Valleys and the Allegheny Plateaup. 37
Planted Forestsp. 39
Connectionsp. 41
Chapter 3. Northeastern Forest Dynamics, Past and Futurep. 45
Introductionp. 45
Broadening Concepts for Measuring the Forest, 1630-1993p. 45
Disturbance Patterns and Forest Dynamics: Presettlement Forestsp. 51
Current Impacts of Disturbancesp. 53
History of Human Disturbancesp. 54
Forest Management and Harvesting as Disturbance Factors, 1990-2040p. 60
Wildlife in the Northeastern Forestp. 63
A Habitat Generalist: White-tailed Deerp. 65
Land and Waterp. 67
Songbirds: Indicators of Regional Biodiversityp. 68
A Recovering Top Carnivore: The Bald Eagle in Mainep. 70
Landscapes for Wildnessp. 71
Ecosystem Managementp. 73
Overviewp. 74
Chapter 4. A Damp and Intricate Wilderness: the Industrial Forestp. 76
History of the Industrial Forestp. 78
Pennsylvania's Industrial Forest: A Sketchp. 83
Harvesting the Timber: Technology and the Forestp. 91
Cutting and Growing Trees: Debate Over Forest Practicesp. 97
Conflict on the Fringesp. 103
Working in the Woodsp. 108
The Spruce Budwormp. 112
A Paper Plantation?p. 113
Overview and Themesp. 113
Chapter 5. Rockwood's Pasture: New England's Suburban Forestp. 115
Suburbanizationp. 116
Farm, Forest, and Suburbia in New Jerseyp. 118
Changing Landscapep. 121
Suburbs and Forests in Connecticutp. 122
Growth and Cut of Connecticut Forestsp. 126
Forest Industries Since World War IIp. 127
Policy Conflictsp. 128
Historic Perspectivep. 129
The Future of the Northeast's Suburban Forestp. 131
Challenge for the Futurep. 133
Chapter 6. Stone Walls in the Woods: the Rural Forestp. 135
Farm Expansion and Retreatp. 137
Habitat Fragmentation--The Eagle's Eye Viewp. 147
Public Access to the Rural Forestp. 148
Forestry in the Rural Forestp. 149
Changes Needed in Forestry Assistance Programsp. 152
Overviewp. 158
Chapter 7. A Place in the Country: the Recreational Forestp. 159
Changing Land Uses in Vermontp. 161
Vermont's 1970s Recreation Boom: Trends, Impact, and Community Responsep. 164
The Land Boom in Dover and Wilmington, Vermontp. 164
The 1980s Northeastern Land Boomp. 166
Economic and Social Impactp. 167
Response: Social Innovation in Planningp. 170
Impacts of Wildland Subdivisionsp. 173
Reflectionsp. 174
Chapter 8. The Northeast's Wild Forestp. 177
Services and Values of the Wild Forestp. 181
Recreation in the Wild Forestp. 185
Adirondack Wildernessp. 186
Baxter State Parkp. 188
Federal Wildernessp. 191
State and Local Wild Areasp. 193
Wild and Scenic Riversp. 194
Recreation on Private Landsp. 198
Outlookp. 198
Chapter 9. Forest Landownershipp. 202
Early Forest Landownersp. 202
Current Patterns of Forest Landownershipp. 204
Land, Farm, and Timber Boomsp. 210
Industrial Ownership in the Forestp. 215
The Public Forest Estatep. 218
Nonindustrial Private Ownersp. 224
Private Ownership and Public Usesp. 226
Nongovernmental, Nonprofit Organizationsp. 227
Foreign Ownershipp. 229
Policy Themesp. 230
Chapter 10. The Northeast's Timber Budgetp. 239
Colonial Times to 1920p. 239
Regional Surveys, 1920-1976p. 246
Turnaround at Mid-Centuryp. 248
The Timber Budget: Quantityp. 250
The Quality Problemp. 253
Third-Party Certificationp. 257
Fuelwood: Economic Demands and Environmental Issuesp. 260
Tree Mortality, Forest Health, and the Global Commonsp. 264
Summaryp. 268
Chapter 11. Wood Products and the Northeastern Economyp. 270
Vanished Industriesp. 270
Sawmilling and Loggingp. 271
Panel Productsp. 274
Pulp and Paperp. 275
Importance to the Northeastern Economyp. 279
Economic Development: Revival of an Old Concernp. 281
Outlook for Output and Employmentp. 284
Northeastern Wood and the World Economy: Log Exportsp. 287
Recycling: A New Resource Basep. 289
Can the Northeastern Forests Meet Growing Demands?p. 289
Impacts of Higher Harvest Levelp. 294
Chapter 12. Forest Policy: Themes, Challenges, and New Directionsp. 296
Changing Forest Policy Themesp. 296
Challenges of the Coming Half-Centuryp. 306
What Can Be Done?p. 308
A Case for Laissez-Faire?p. 312
A Case for Expanded Subsidies?p. 313
A Case for Government Regulation of Forest Practice?p. 313
Landscape Management Areas: What Will the Eagles See?p. 315
Conserving Wildnessp. 317
What Role for the Federal Government?p. 317
A Program in Briefp. 318
Chapter 13. Northeastern Forests: Past and Futurep. 320
External Forcesp. 320
Internal Forcesp. 322
The Northeast's Future Forestsp. 324
The Fate of the Forest Mattersp. 325
Abiding Conditionsp. 328
Referencesp. 335
Indexp. 389