Items of Interest

The national forest reservation commission has just approved the purchase of the Pisgah forest from the estate of the late George W. Vanderbilt, at an average price of five dollars an acre. The tract consists of eighty-six thousand seven hundred acres, and the total cost is therefore four hundred and thirty-three thousand five hundred dollars. The price paid is less than the average for other tracts already acquired, although the Pisgah forest has been developed by its former owner into one of the best forest properties in the country. This is the second time that the commission has had the purchase of this tract under consideration. Once before, the question of its purchase was taken up, but the commission did not deem it advisable to acquire it at that time.

The tract includes portions of Transylvania, Henderson, Buncombe, and Hayward counties in North Carolina. It covers the entire eastern slope and portions of the northern and western slopes of the Pisgah range, one of the most prominent of the souther Appalachians. Its forests influence for the most part tributaries of the French Broad river, which unites with the Holstein river at Knoxville, Tenn., to form the Tennessee river. Mrs. Vanderbilt, wishing the tract to remain intact and to become the property of the people, offered it at a figure two hundred thousand dollars less than that at which it was held by her husband.

It is proposed to make the tract a game refuge for the preservation of the fauna of the eastern mountains. It is particularly well suited to this purpose, since it is already well stocked with game and fish, including deer, turkey, and pheasant; and in the streams rainbow trout and brook trout, with which they have been systematically stocked from year to year. With this purchase, and with others just approved, the total area approved for purchase under the Weeks law in the eastern mountains is one million seventy-seven thousand acres.

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The Laborer's Hire
June 27, 1914

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