Gifford Pinchot

Selected Writings

By (author) Gifford Pinchot Edited by Char Miller

Hardback - £59.95

Publication date:

27 April 2017

Length of book:

264 pages

Publisher

Penn State University Press

ISBN-13: 9780271078410

The founding chief of the U.S. Forest Service and twice governor of Pennsylvania, Gifford Pinchot was central to the early twentieth-century conservation movement in the United States and the political history and evolution of the Keystone State. This collection of Pinchot’s essays, articles, and letters reveals a gifted public figure whose work and thoughts on the environment, politics, society, and science remain startlingly relevant today.

A learned man and admirably accessible writer, Pinchot showed keen insight on issues as wide-ranging as the rights of women and minorities, war, education, Prohibition, agricultural policy, land use, and the craft of politics. He developed galvanizing arguments against the unregulated exploitation of natural resources, made a clear case for thinking globally but acting locally, railed at the pernicious impact of corporate power on democratic life, and firmly believed that governments were obligated to enhance public health, increase economic opportunity, and sustain the land. Pinchot’s policy accomplishments—including the first clean-water legislation in Pennsylvania and the nation—speak to his effectiveness as a communicator and a politician. His observations on environmental issues were exceptionally prescient, as they anticipated the dilemmas currently confronting those who shape environmental public policy.

Introduced and annotated by environmental historian Char Miller, this is the only comprehensive collection of Pinchot’s writings. Those interested in the history of conservation, the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, American politics, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will find this book invaluable.

Gifford Pinchot: Selected Writings has resurrected a number of primary sources and offered them in the service of researchers and scholars. Pinchot’s unedited voice and opinions give a rare glimpse into one of America’s most significant figures. The collection and Char Miller’s commentary deserve and will no doubt receive a strong welcome from researchers of the early twentieth century and environmental history.”

—Jameson Karns, Environmental History