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Allen, Edward Tyson (26 December 1875–27 May 1942), forester and conservationist, was born in New Haven, Connecticut, the son of Oscar Dana Allen, a professor of analytical chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Yale, and Fidelia Roberts Totman. Educated in the public schools and privately by his father, Allen moved with his family first to California and later to Washington State, where they lived near Mount Rainier. He began work as a reporter for the ...

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Baker, Hugh Potter (20 January 1878–24 May 1950), forester and university administrator, was born in St. Croix Falls, Polk County, Wisconsin, the son of Joseph Stannard Baker, a land agent, and Alice Potter. His father was financially successful, and Baker grew up in surroundings that were physically comfortable and culture-filled. Both of his parents having attended college, Baker received his early schooling locally before entering Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he remained a year before transferring to Michigan Agricultural College (now Michigan State University). He graduated with a B.S. in 1901, having also begun work in partnership with his brother, Fred Baker, in a part-time position at the federal Division of Forestry. This division, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, was then run by pioneer forester and future governor of Pennsylvania ...

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Bernhard Fernow. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-49489).

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Fernow, Bernhard Eduard (07 January 1851–06 February 1923), pioneer professional forester in North America, was born in the province of Posen, Prussia (now Poland), the son of Eduard Fernow, who opted for law and government service rather than managing the family estate, and Clara Nordman, the second of Eduard’s three wives. In his youth Fernow spent time with his uncle, Frederick Edmund Fernow, who managed the family property which included a large forest holding. At age nineteen, following secondary school and before beginning his classroom studies at the Münden Forest Academy in the province of Hanover, Fernow spent a year in practical woods work with the Prussian forest department. His forestry education was interrupted in 1870 by military service as an army lieutenant during the Franco-Prussian War. Before graduating from forestry school he met Olivia Reynolds, a U.S. citizen who had accompanied her brother during his university studies in Germany. Olivia was hired to teach Fernow English. When they became engaged and left for the United States in 1876, his family, expecting him to follow in his uncle’s footsteps, was upset at his departure. The couple married in 1879 and subsequently had five children....

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Hough, Franklin Benjamin (22 July 1822–11 June 1885), forester, was born Benjamin Franklin Hough in Martinsburg, New York, the son of Horatio Gates Hough, a physician, and Martha Pitcher. When he was eight years old he discovered a cousin with the same name and reversed his given names, styling himself Franklin B. Hough. His father died when Hough was eight years old. He entered Lowville Academy in 1836. Early in his career, local residents became aware of his fascination with rocks and minerals. He continued his education at the Black River Literary and Religious Institute at Watertown, New York, and then in 1840 he entered Union College in Schenectady and graduated three years later....

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Franklin B. Hough. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-11107).

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Michaux, François-André (16 August 1770–23 October 1855), plant explorer and silviculturist, was born at the royal estate at Satory, next to Versailles, France, the son of André Michaux, then overseer of the estate, and Cécile Claye, daughter of a local farmer. His mother died shortly after his birth. Little is known of his early education, but he appears to have been brought up by an aunt. In 1785 he accompanied his father to North America on a royal commission to explore the forests for trees that could be grown in France. Though the elder Michaux sometimes took his son on his journeys, he generally left him to look after the nursery that he had established near Charleston, South Carolina, in 1786....

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Gifford Pinchot Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-3906).

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Pinchot, Gifford (11 August 1865–04 October 1946), forester, conservationist, and governor of Pennsylvania, was born in Simsbury, Connecticut, the son of James Wallace Pinchot, a wealthy merchant, and Mary Jane Eno. Proud of his French ancestry, James W. Pinchot raised his family in a primly decorous but brilliant social environment steeped in French culture....