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Australia's Foresters

by John Dargavel

Who were the country’s foresters? What were they like? What lives did they lead? Did they have common traits? Can we get a sense of them collectively? What did they do? How did their place in society evolve and change? And conversely how did social changes affect them? All these and more questions send us to their biographies. Can we find answers?

The inquiry is timely. What had become a well-established profession in Australia with tertiary training for its members and professional organisations to represent them entered a period of substantial change at the end of the twentieth century. The states’ forestry services that employed most of them were swept away by the waves of government restructuring; many of the native forests they managed were placed in other hands; research laboratories closed; industrial plantations—not native forests—came to supply most of the wood; in the computer and satellite age they became more productive; fewer were needed and university courses shrank or stopped which only added to their feeling of existential crisis. A historical perspective may help us see their situation more clearly. In this essay I explore how far we can do so using the information about individuals provided on the National Centre of Biography’s website as the primary source, whose scope and limitations must first be considered. Subsequent sections follow chronologically. The definition of ‘Australian forester’ used here follows the Australian Dictionary of Biography’s practice of including people who spent significant parts of their lives in Australia, irrespective of where they were born. Foreigners who only studied here are not included. The general understanding of a ‘forester’–‘inspector’, ‘conservator’ are also common terms–is of someone who manages or looks after forests. This understanding is historically contingent in ways discussed later.

Sources
At the time of writing (September 2015), twenty people are listed in the Australian Dictionary of Biography with the occupation of ‘forester’. They were selected by its state and national committees according to protocols of worthiness, and the availability of authors. The entries were written by historians and experts in the field, are about 500 to 800 words in length, are factual and have been rigorously checked and edited. Only people who died before 1990 are included in the present list. Seventeen are the ‘great men’ who led forestry departments or institutions, but one, Stanley McDougall is included as the winner of a VC, and another, Angelos Palmos as an unusual migrant tree-planter. One, Sir Roy Robinson, eminent as a British forester, is not considered in this essay.

A wider coverage is provided by the obituaries published in forestry journals and newspapers. Some of the tributes printed on occasions of retirement or awards are classed as obituaries if the date of death is known. At the time of writing, 187 obituaries and equivalents have been entered on the National Centre of Biography’s Obituaries Australia website. They were found through exhaustive searches of the Australian Forestry Journal (1918–1931), Australian Forestry (1936–2014), Institute of Foresters Newsletter (1965–2002), The Forester (2000–2014), and the Australian Forest History Society Newsletter (1988–2014). A search was made of the digitised newspapers accessible through the National Library of Australia’s TROVE site that covers the period from George Perrin’s obituary in 1900 to 1954 (when copyright expired). A few further obituaries were obtained from more recent newspapers. The obituaries vary considerably in length. Some, particularly for the earliest foresters are very brief, under 150 words; the average length is about 650, and a few are over 1000. There is no information about how people are chosen to be the subject of obituaries. Prominence and popularity might be assumed, while early or tragic death or unusual circumstances warranted some. An author’s interest, ability and opportunity to write one are required, and that probably adds an element of randomness. Most of the obituaries were written by friends and colleagues and follow an accepted pattern of reporting achievements and worthy personal attributes or idiosyncrasies.

The Australian Dictionary of Biography and the Obituaries Australia entries are accompanied by summaries that enable indexing facilities to be used. Some supplementary information was added to these by limited searching in genealogical data bases, and by consulting the archives of the Australian Forestry School (Australian National University Archives).

The individual nature of the sources can show variation and might dispel stereotyping, but to give a collective sense of Australian foresters, they are more limited. They cover only a small sample of the total population (about 6% of the rough estimate of 3500 of those who have ever lived) and are biased towards the leading figures. Combined with the kindly bias inherent in obituaries our understanding is curtailed. The failures, the sad, the unpopular are not there; the drunks, the bullies, the intolerant may be there, but their drunkenness, bullying and intolerance are not; we cannot see their full humanity. Because most of the obituaries in forestry publications were written by other foresters, we might expect them to present a sense of how foresters wish to be seen collectively (see Watson 2015 for a general discussion of the life-history methodology).

Our blinkers may not be as serious when we consider some of the larger social changes over time because these might be assumed to affect most foresters. We can turn to Australian forest history literature to divide the changing context of the foresters’ lives into five phases from establishing state forestry (c.1871–1920); building on this with tertiary education, research and professional organisations (c.1910–1950); expanding in the post-war period (c.1945–1970s); and fracturing into the strands of conservation, industrial plantations, overseas forestry and the diminishing strand of managing native forests (from the 1980s) (Carron 1985; Dargavel 1995). The lives of many individuals spanned more than one phase with varying degrees of pleasure or consternation.

Establishing
Although we have records for a few Australian foresters in the 1870s and 1880s, we need to step a century back, and go to Britain and India to gain an idea of their roots. When Britain was starting its Australian settlements at the end of the eighteenth century its foresters were becoming skilled differently from those in the centuries before them. No longer were they managing royal forests for the king’s hunting, most were employed on large estates to manage woods and develop plantations. They not only had to be good woodsmen supplying local and distant needs for wood and grazing, they also had new tasks. Many estate owners had followed the fashion of planting specimens of exotic trees to grace their grounds. When they realised the economic potential, many, especially those in Scotland, started to establish plantations as laudable endeavours for ‘beauty, effect and profit’. Their foresters had to devise methods to do so from the existing knowledge of growing orchard and ornamental trees, or ‘arboriculture’. As plantations became more popular, more foresters had to be trained. The well-established apprenticeship system for gardeners was used. The forestry apprentices started from a good base as Scotland had the highest level of school education in Europe. A second strand was provided to middle-class young men by the article system that trained surveyors and estate management agents—‘factors’ in Scotland—whose responsibilities included both natural woods and plantations. In 1854 a group of Scottish landowners and foresters established the Scottish Arboricultural Society to put forestry on a scientific basis, and to formalise training with courses and certificates (Oosthoek, 2013). A high standard of education and practice was achieved.

The second root can be traced to Britain’s Indian empire (Barton 2009). A need to conserve their forests and control its resources had led to a distinct form of ‘imperial’ or ‘colonial’ forestry being devised as a state enterprise based on ‘demarcating’ the best areas as state forests, reducing pre-existing rights, setting up a state forest service staffed by a cadre of trained foresters to manage the forests primarily, but not exclusively for timber. Doctors, army engineers and botanists filled the first positions. They were followed by a few foresters formally trained in forest science in German universities, the French national forestry school, and, from 1885, in Britain. Links between the two roots can be seen in the lives of those governors and officers who came from landed estates where forestry flourished, and served in India. Sir Ronald Munro Ferguson, Governor-General in Australia 1914–1920 (later Lord Novar) was an outstanding example who encouraged forestry in Australia and nurtured his plantations in Scotland.

The declaration in 1788 that the land belonged to the Crown set the eventual identification of Australian forestry, and hence the employment of foresters, as a state matter to a greater extent than in other countries. Although colonial Governors made orders and regulations about timber cutting from 1795, it was not until 1839 when the cutters had to be licensed that an administrative system of social control and revenue-raising was started, using NSW Lands Department officers, magistrates, and police officers acting as crown lands bailiffs to apply it. Other colonies followed suite in time, but regulations and a few officers were nowhere near enough in the broad landscapes of Australia where cutters went more or less where they would, and settlers cleared forest as fast as they could. The need to stop the waste of valuable timber, conserve forests and create plantations for the future was argued by botanists, visiting imperial foresters, and others. Their conservation ideals crept forward slowly against opposition from the pastoralists and resistance in the Lands Departments, but eventually the colonies started to reserve some forests from clearing and set up distinct administrations to look after them.

NSW gazetted permanent forest reserves in 1871 and sent the botanist and explorer William Carron first to report on them and then to be the inspector of forests and ranger for the Clarence District. We might regard him as Australia’s first forester, but it seems that he did little or no work as one because his health failed rapidly and he died within three or four weeks of arriving at his post in Grafton. The next forest inspector was the alcoholic poet, Henry Kendall, appointed in 1881 probably to let him recover his health, but he only lived for a year. Others followed in the Forest Conservancy Branch that by 1888 was responsible for two million hectares of forest reserves.

If we take poor William Carron as Australia’s first forester, John Ednie Brown was the second, and the first trained one. He had trained as a factor and forester in Scotland, had practised in Britain, and had studied trees and forests in Europe and North America. He started his Australian career in 1878 in South Australia, where the need to conserve the forests and establish plantations for the future had been argued by the German-born curator of South Australia’s botanic garden, Richard Schomburgk, the Danish-born politician, Friedrich Krichauff—each of whom had trained first as a gardener—and by the Surveyor-General, George Goyder. In Victoria, the eminent botanist Ferdinand Mueller had long argued for forest conservation, but it was not until 1888 that a Forests sub-branch was created there. In 1890, New South Wales–so unlucky with its first foresters–brought Ednie Brown from South Australia to be its first Director-General of Forests and take charge of its forest reserves. Western Australia asked for Mueller for advice and appointed a Forest Inspector, J. S. Harris, to prepare reports, but took no action until 1895 when it started a Forestry Department and brought the most experienced forester in the country, Ednie Brown to run it. He died four years later when he was forty-nine.

Governments needed people to start their nascent forestry organisations: to be their foresters. We have information about thirty-two of them (Table 1). Some had training in botany or horticulture, some were competent people in the Lands Departments or had bush skills, and some started as cadets when they were about fourteen or fifteen years old. Several rose to become leaders. For example, George Perrin was an energetic and determined man, with a background in botany and travelling in northern Australia, who Brown appointed in 1880 and promoted to chief forester. Tasmania advertised for a Conservator and Perrin got the job in 1886. However, with no staff and little real interest there in forest conservation, he left for Victoria where he was appointed as its first Conservator in 1888 (Burns 2012; Taylor 2002). There, he was able to build up a staff of 27 foresters and several trainees, before he died in 1900.

We can gain an idea of the lives of the early foresters doing district work, like Thomas Bailes who came up through the Lands Department, from Taylor’s biography of John La Gerche (Taylor 1998). La Gerche had emigrated from Jersey as a young man and had run his own sawmill in Victoria before joining the public service. In 1882 he was appointed as a Crown Lands Bailiff and Forester to stop people cutting trees illegally on the Ballarat and Creswick state forests. His duties expanded over the years to include managing forest nurseries and plantations, the inevitable fire-fighting, and the careful thinning of the forests for their best growth. In 1899 he was promoted Assistant Inspector of Forests and the third most senior forester in Victoria.

The schemes to train cadets lacked formally-trained foresters, other than Brown to run them, but still produced leading foresters, like Wilfred de Beuzeville and most notably, Harold Swain (Holzworth 2014). Swain learnt surveying in the NSW Lands Department, studied other subjects in evening classes, and taught himself forestry out of text books. He became a district forester in NSW, the head of Queensland’s (1918–1932) and NSW’s (1935–1946) forestry departments, and a consultant in Australia and Ethiopia (1951–1955).

Building
The twentieth century started optimistically with federation, but co-operation was hesitant. The leaders of the small state forest agencies met in 1911 and recommended that Australia needed to conserve sufficient forests and start plantations. Although they had established forestry organisations as best they could, they needed better ways of recruiting and training foresters. Within a few months of each other, Victoria and South Australia started forestry schools, but took paths that reflected their roots, discussed earlier.

Victoria up-graded its cadet scheme when it opened its Victorian School of Forestry at Creswick 1910. It offered scholarships to bright students of 15 or 16 years of age who had completed their Leaving Certificates. Scholarships like these were keenly sought as they opened a tertiary education for students from modest backgrounds, like Alfred Lawrence. Its three-year diploma course contained science and forestry subjects and gave strong practical training. Western Australia and NSW also started forestry schools at Ludlow and Nara in the 1920s to train students entering at 14 or 15 years of age in two-year diploma courses, but these schools only lasted for a few years. We have information on the National Centre for Biography’s website about twenty-six foresters who started in these three diploma schools and about one who trained in a similar one in Britain (Table 2). Some were able to obtain scholarships for further training in university-level courses as these became available. Fifteen of the foresters about whom we have information did so. The disproportionate number probably reflects their increased prominence that made them more likely to become subjects of obituaries.

South Australia followed the empire model when it started a course in forestry at the University of Adelaide for students over 18 years of age who had matriculated by passing the university’s entrance examination. They were supported by scholarships but, when compared to the Victorian School of Forestry, fewer students had the further schooling to apply. Norman Jolly (1882–1954) was the Instructor for the first year. He was the first Australian-born forester to have a degree in forestry. He was followed in 1912 by Hugh Corbin (1879–1951) who was the second Australian forester to have a degree; Jolly’s was from Oxford, Corbin’s from Edinburgh; both had experience in India. The three-year BSc degree course in Adelaide included practical work in the state’s forests and plantations.

These early forestry schools were tiny. In Adelaide’s fifteen years of operation, it graduated only nineteen foresters, of whom we have information about fourteen. As the only degree course, it attracted students from the other states. In the same period, 51 foresters graduated from Creswick. An experienced imperial forester, David Hutchins, who visited in 1914–1916, argued forcefully that Australia’s forestry departments needed formally-trained men in charge. In 1916, Western Australia recruited Charles Lane Poole, who had trained in the French National Forestry School and had been a conservator in Africa; and in 1919 Victoria recruited Owen Jones who had trained in Britain’s first forestry school and had practised in Ceylon. The trend for some Australians to seek opportunities for overseas training, started by Jolly was followed by Kim Kessell who had graduated from Adelaide, but did further training in Oxford before he returned to Australia after serving in WWI; and by Peter Grenning who went there on a scholarship. Many would follow over the years, some from the 1930s with travel support from a prize endowed by Russell Grimwade that enabled them to attend the Imperial Forestry Institute in Oxford, and gain experience in European forests. Nevertheless, Australia needed to train most of its foresters at home.

The establishment of a national school was advocated in successive conferences from 1916. Should it accept students with leaving certificates, or older ones who had matriculated? What emphasis should it give to practical training? And where should it be? The states could never agree; the differences in background and training of the leading foresters at the time were too great for that. Finally, the Commonwealth agreed to start its Australian Forestry School in 1926. It offered a two-year course for students who had already completed two years of science in their state universities. The Commonwealth funded its staff and building, and the states covered university fees at home and living expenses in Canberra. Its first twenty years were difficult. The Great Depression, the Second World War, the states’ suspicions of the Commonwealth, and the abrasive manner of the school’s head, Charles Lane Poole, all acted to reduce the number of students being sent there; one year there were none and several times it was nearly closed (Dargavel 2008). We have information about 34 foresters who enrolled in the Australian Forestry School up to 1945, five of whom had already qualified from the diploma courses at Creswick and Narara (Table 3a). Victoria kept its diploma school and developed its links with the University of Melbourne that from 1938 offered a degree course in forestry. Seven foresters graduated up to 1945. We have information about one of them, William McKenzie who became a noted wood scientist.

Although these forestry schools were small and two of them were short-lived, they enabled the number of formally-trained foresters to be increased to about 250 during the first half of the twentieth century, gradually replacing the old order that had established Australian forestry. The stringencies of the Depression and two world wars limited them, but they had assessed large areas of the state forests, made long-term plans for many of them, established plantations, and had started a journal to disseminate information: they had much to be proud of. In 1935 some of the Australian Forestry School graduates started the Institute of Foresters of Australia as their professional body to ‘advance and protect the cause of forestry’. Echoing the class division between their two roots, they claimed the authority of science in their battle to conserve the forests, but excluded most of the foresters with only experience or diplomas from voting membership. It was a division that rankled for the rest of the century.

Expanding
The press for national development after WWII and a booming economy enabled Australian foresters to do much more. They built roads and fire trails, erected fire towers, intensified and diversified research, established plantations, and argued persistently to have state forests reserved. Finally, in 1965, they achieved their target of having 24.5 million acres [9.9 million hectares] of state forests, that they had sought in 1920 as being sufficient to supply the nation’s timber needs. All this expansion meant that more foresters were needed; most by the states’ forest services, some to manage national parks, others by companies to start plantations or run their logging operations, and some to conduct research.

The forestry schools had to expand as servicemen returned and as the states nominated more students. The Victorian School of Forestry increased its intake from four students a year to twelve, and the Australian Forestry School from seven to twenty-six, so that from the end of the war to the mid-1960s they had trained over 600 foresters (Tables 2, 3b). Even so, some states still had vacancies that they filled by recruiting trained foresters like Patrick McNamara (and the author) from Britain, or by appointing immigrants like Piotr Mackiewicz (Table 4). The era of vocational training in government institutions with their attendant scholarships gave way to university education. The Australian Forestry School was replaced by the Australian National University’s Department of Forestry in 1965, and the Victorian School of Forestry was integrated into Melbourne University in 1980 (Table 6). However, the older path of diplomas, competence, experience and promotion continued in some of the public services.

Research was increased as part of the general expansion. The Commonwealth’s small research program gained greater facilities and recognition when it formed its Forest Research Institute, headed by Neil Cromer in 1963, and transferred to CSIRO’s new Division of Forest Research in 1975. New South Wales and Victoria also built up quite substantial research branches, while the other states and two of the private companies started small ones. Foresters needed higher degrees for research or university teaching and had to go either to overseas universities as Eric Bachelard did to Yale, or to botany departments at home as Max Gilbert did in Tasmania. Once Australian universities had established forestry departments, they could qualify at home, as Ken Eldridge did, or go overseas as many like Wilf Crane did. Most of those going overseas went to the active and well-funded research centres in the USA, although some continued to go to the renamed Commonwealth Forestry Institute in Oxford, most for its one-year professional development course. Specialists were also recruited from other disciplines, such as Betty Allan and George McIntyre, who taught statistics to students, or Geoff Marks, who investigated forest diseases in Victoria. Some scientists from other institutions specialised in forests, like the botanist David Ashton, who researched and taught forest ecology of Victoria’s ash forests to generations of forestry students at the University of Melbourne. Increased specialisation blurred the understanding of who a ‘forester’ was, and qualifying terms such as ‘forest scientist’, ‘forest engineer’, or ‘forest pathologist’ were needed to index individuals. Moreover, some individuals moved from being foresters in the original sense to being timber industry managers, and some, like Peter South and Mark Edgerley, moved back again.

The era of expansion lasted, with some fluctuations, into the 1980s, by which time the foresters were well established, their institutions solid, and their old battles with lands departments a thing of the past. They were advancing scientifically and technically, and were excited by the large scales on which they were establishing plantations and exporting waste from the hardwood forests as woodchips. While these changes provided the common context of their lives, their diversity was increasing: there was more variety in universities, companies, consulting firms and national parks at home; more were obtaining overseas degrees; some, like Bert Clarke and Alf Leslie, took positions in international organisations; and several, like John Fryer, Ted Mannion and Wallie Nunn, worked on assignments overseas. Nevertheless, the majority of foresters spent their working lives in the states’ forest services.

Fracturing
The two great social and political forces of environmentalism and neo-liberalism acted against the foresters and broke up their institutions from the 1970s. The foresters were startled when the environmentalists attacked them, and dismayed by the ‘forest wars’ against logging and pine plantations that dominated the media and gained political traction. Beneath these phenomena lay a deep fracture in the idea of forest conservation. The foresters’ long drive to overcome deforestation and waste, with reservation and management was for them its essence. They saw nothing incompatible between reserving state forests for long-term use, making better use of Australian timbers, and reserving national parks for their scenic, recreational and natural values. For example, Alf Lawrence, when he retired as the Chairman of Victoria’s Forests Commission in 1969, was elected as the first Chairman of the non-governmental Conservation Council of Victoria and of the industry’s Timber Promotion Committee. Several foresters managed national parks and conservation reserves: Robert Boden was head of the Northern Territory’s parks service, Baldur Byles was a Trustee of the Kosciuszko National Park, and Bob Jones managed the Alpine Resort for the Forests Commission and later parks for the Victorian parks service.

The foresters’ very successes were their downfall. They were bulldozing swathes of economically unproductive forests to make room for pine plantations; and with booming Japanese demands for woodchips, they were clear-felling swathes of other forests that they had long wanted to regenerate as new crops. Both were sudden, large and hideous as the public saw on TV, or read about in books and pamphlets with provocative titles such as The Fight for the Forests (Routley and Routley 1973) or The Vanishing Forests? (Jones 1975). A different view of conservation based on the primacy of intrinsic ecological values, particularly of wildlife, was being vigorously asserted by non-government environmental organisations.

The foresters were offended and dismayed by the stridency; Lawrence resigned his chairmanship of the Conservation Council in 1975. Behind these social perceptions lay substantive issues of soil erosion, water pollution and, above all, the destruction of the native animals’ habitat, something the foresters had largely ignored. The conflicts became increasingly polarised, marked in 1983 when the Australian Conservation Foundation declared its policy that ‘wood production should be transferred from native forests to …plantations established outside the current forest estate’. And they became increasingly politicised into the ‘forest wars’.

Some native forests were transferred to national parks, while the foresters managing the remainder gradually absorbed the substance of the environmental critique, ameliorated their practices and enlarged their concept of forest conservation to give greater recognition to values beyond the production of wood. Rather than base their planning on sustaining the yield of wood, they adopted the international principles of sustainable forest management that aimed to keep all the values of the forests. To do so, they had to work with ecologists, botanists, archaeologists, anthropologists and other specialists, and they had to accept that community consultation was a necessary part of their management in the 1990s; no longer were they the sole keepers of forest knowledge, or sole decision-makers. The foresters managing plantations largely stopped bulldozing native forests as they enjoyed government policies and tax concessions that encouraged a rapid expansion of planting on former farm land. They became more productive by adopting intensive methods of tree breeding, fertilisation, mechanisation and automation. In doing so, they also had to work with horticulturalists, geneticists, engineers and other specialists.

The turmoil of the environmental conflicts was compounded by the increasing dominance of neo-liberalism in Australia. Its assertion of economic rather than state regulation struck at the heart of forestry as a state endeavour; not only did the state forest services manage the native forests, they had invested in plantations, and in South Australia owned wood processing mills. In the new polity, what could not be privatised was ‘corporatized’ and re-organised under the ideas of ‘new-managerialism’ in the public sector. Some states amalgamated their partisan forests and environment departments to overcome their differences, while others segregated the commercial production of wood from environmental and regulatory responsibilities. As in other parts of the public service, reorganisations kept recurring. Moreover, the new-managerialism defined ‘core’ activities narrowly so that other activities—often research—were sloughed off. The turmoil was particularly difficult for foresters, many of whom had spent their lives, from the time they were cadets, in the same department; some had followed their fathers into the same department, and a few, like Peter Grose, their grandfathers. Long personal associations were lost, and no longer could they aspire to be ‘forest conservators’. At best they could only be company-like ‘directors’ in organisations with names that often lost any forestry identity.

As the twenty-first century started, the effects of the processes operating over the previous quarter of a century became starkly apparent to the foresters. Their ‘cause of forestry’ had fractured into distinct strands. The native forests were still in state control, although increasingly large areas were in the hands of parks managers, not foresters. The plantation foresters’ lives were unsettled when state plantations were privatized and when two large ‘managed investment schemes’ collapsed. The fourth strand for Australian foresters in the twenty-first century lay in working overseas where they had proved themselves adaptable to work on agro-forestry and small-scale community projects that had no parallels in Australian practice. Nevertheless, these opportunities shrank as overseas aid budgets were reduced in the 2010s. Such trends will remain outside the range of the information gathered by the National Centre for Biography for some years.

Reflection
The historical perspective can sometimes help us reflect on current situations in useful ways. At the start of this essay, the question was posed as to whether we could gain a sense of the collective lives of Australian foresters as they changed through time. Given that the turmoil in recent years has engendered a feeling of existential crisis, two linked matters are raised here for reflection.

Australia’s first foresters had varied backgrounds in botany, gardening, surveying, exploration and much else. Only one, John Ednie Brown had been trained as a forester, yet they started and ran Australia’s forest services. It was almost half a century before the handful of foresters formally trained in the tiny Australian forestry schools started to replace them. Formal forestry training became the norm, and in 1980 a university degree in forestry became almost mandatory for employment as a forester. This history of convergence is now changing into a pattern of divergence as a wider range of activities, institutions and specialist disciplines are involved in managing forests.

Who is regarded as a forester is historically and socially contingent. The early foresters were appointed, making a ‘forester’ a title to an occupation and position in the public service. Graduates from the forestry schools were made into ‘foresters’ by their qualifications or for the Institute of Foresters by particular qualifications. Thankfully for this author, retired foresters are regarded as foresters. Similarly foresters in other occupations may be seen, or see themselves as foresters. Lecturers or forest research workers are generally regarded as foresters from their qualifications and their occupation being seen as being part of forestry. There is no clear line. Sawmill managers and industry lobbyists commonly claim to be seen as foresters by their forestry qualifications and from the forest’s products they work with; some as noted earlier moved back and forth between forestry and industry occupations.

The information gathered by the National Centre of Biography refers only to past foresters and could be supplemented from other sources or enlarged to consider information about present foresters. Nevertheless, the information that has been collected has enabled some of the features of change and variety to be seen, features that seem as relevant today as in the past.

References
Australian National University Archives, ANUA 542, Enrolment and academic records; ANUA 539, Postgraduate records.

Barton, Gregory Allen, Empire Forestry and the Origins of Environmentalism, Cambridge University Press, 2009.

Burns, Dick, Pathfinders in Tasmanian Botany: an honour roll of people connected through naming Tasmanian plants, Hobart, Tasmanian Arboretum, 2012.

Carron, L.T., A History of Forestry in Australia, ANU Press, 1985.

Dargavel, John, Fashioning Australia’s Forests, Melbourne, Oxford University Press, 1995.

Dargavel, John, The Zealous Conservator: a Life of Charles Lane Poole, Crawley, WA, University of Western Australia Press, 2008.

Holzworth, Peter, A Tribute to Edward Harold Fulcher Swain, Brisbane, Peter Holzworth, 2014.

Jones, Richard (ed.), The vanishing forests? : woodchip production and the public interest in Tasmania, Hobart, Environmental Law Reform Group, University of Tasmania, 1975.

Oosthoek, Jan, Conquering the Highlands: a History of Afforestation of the Scottish Uplands, ANU Press, 2013.

Routley, R. and Routley, V., The Fight for the Forests: the Takeover of Australian Forests for Pines, Woodchips and Intensive Forestry, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University, 1975.

Taylor, Angela, A Forester’s Log: the Story of John La Gerche and the Ballarat-Creswick State Forest 1882–1897, Melbourne University Press, 1998.

Taylor, Angela, ‘Perrin, George Samuel’, in Oxford Companion to Australian Gardens, Richard Aitken and Michael Looker eds, South Melbourne, Oxford University Press, pp. 468-9, 2002.

Watson, Ian, A Disappearing World: Studies in Class, Gender & Memory, Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2015.

 

Table 1. Foresters not trained in forestry schools

 

date of birth

date of death

process

Carron, William

1821

1876

NSW appointment

Beale, Charles

1835

1929

SA appointment

Reddan, William

1837

1923

SA horticulture

Kendall, Thomas Henry

1839

1882

NSW appointment

McGee, Thomas Henry

1841

1914

NSW appointment

Perrin, George Samuel

1847

1900

SA botany

Lyne, Bishop

1848

1908

NSW not known

Gill, Walter

1851

1929

SA botany

Code, William John

1861

1940

Vic promotion

Melville, Frederick

1863

1928

SA cadet

Small, Francis George

1866

1938

NSW promotion

Durward, William

1866

1932

SA cadet

Beale, Albert George

1870

1923

SA cadet

Stuckey, Edward Ernest

1870

1937

SA cadet

Bailes, Thomas Derham (Tom)

1871

1952

Vic promotion

Schock, Frederick Michael

1871

1923

WA botany

McCormick, Patrick Joseph

1874

1951

NSW cadet

Field, Frederick Robert

1876

1940

SA promotion

Baulman, William

1883

1950

NSW cadet

Swain, Edward Harold

1883

1970

NSW cadet

de Beuzeville, Wilfred Alexander

1884

1954

NSW cadet

Warren, Arthur Henry

1888

1935

Tas appointment

McDougall, Stanley Robert

1889

1968

Tas appoint

Galbraith, Alfred Vernon

1890

1949

Vic not known

Melville, Frederick Dudley

1891

1918

SA cadet

Lyne, Herbert John (Bert)

1892

1942

NSW cadet

Tardent, Jules Louis

1894

1982

Qld promotion

Trist, Clarence John (Clarry)

1896

1954

Qld appointment

Jackson, Bernard (Bernie)

1914

1963

NSW promotion

Swynny, Winsleigh Robert (Leigh)

1914

1963

NSW promotion

Dansie, Samuel Justin (Sam)

1927

2012

Qld promotion

Edminston, Roger

1928

2013

WA horticulture

 

 

Table 2. Forestry school diplomates

 

date of birth

obit

Forestry Schools

Mitchell, James Swan

1898

1939

Narara; AFS

Hone, Alfred Andrew (Andy)

1900

1948

VSF; Adel.

Maclean, Godfrey Hubert (Mick)

1901

1984

Narara; AFS

Perry, Douglas Humphrey (Dick)

1902

2003

Ludlow

Benallack, Andrew Leonard (Ben)

1903

1966

VSF

Incoll, Francis Sydney (Frank)

1904

1981

VSF; AFS

Lawrence, Alfred Oscar (Alf)

1904

1986

VSF; AFS

Muir, William Douglas (Bill)

1905

1980

VSF; AFS

Hedley, Alexander Joseph (Alex)

1908

2000

VSF

Luke, Robert Henry (Harry)

1909

2000

VSF; AFS

Bond, Richard Wallace (Dick)

1914

1976

VSF; Melb.

Chinner, John Harding

1915

2001

VSF; Melb.

Jennings, George Henry

1917

1989

VSF

Leslie, Alfred John (Alf)

1921

2009

VSF; Melb.

McKenzie, William Moore (Bill)

1923

2008

VSF; Melb.

Rowell, Michael Neville (Mike)

1927

2010

UK, Thetford

Hall, Michael John (Mike)

1929

2012

VSF; Melb.

Douglas, Moray Guild

1930

2007

VSF

Bachelard, Eric Peter

1931

2009

VSF; Melb.

Craig, Frederic George (Fred)

1935

2005

VSF; Melb.

Cowley, Roger Doherty

1940

1976

VSF; Melb.

Jones, Robert (Bob)

1946

2013

VSF

Hateley, Ronald Francis (Ron)

1948

2011

VSF

Morris, Jim

1949

2006

VSF; Melb.

Penny, Ross

1950

2011

VSF

Geary, Peter

1957

1999

VSF

Grose, Peter Trevan

1957

1995

VSF

Key:     AFS                          Australian Forestry School

Ludlow                   WA, Ludlow Forestry School

Melb.                      University of Melbourne

Narara                    NSW, Narara Forestry School

Thetford                 UK, Forestry Training School, Thetford

VSF                          Victorian School of Forestry, Creswick

 

Table 3a. Australian Forestry School, 1926–1945

 

date of birth

obit

[Previous school] and date of AFS enrolment

Cameron, McRae Archibald (Mac)

1897

1994

1928

Nunn, George Wallie

1898

1966

1926

Mitchell, James Swan

1898

1939

[Narara] 1927

Hudson, Edward Lindsay (Len)

1901

1970

1926

Trist, Alan Robert

1903

1983

1926

Rogers, Lewis John (Lew)

1903

1991

1927

Incoll, Francis Sydney (Frank)

1904

1981

[VSF] 1930

Lawrence, Alfred Oscar (Alf)

1904

1986

[VSF] 1926

Muir, William Douglas (Bill)

1905

1980

[VSF] 1928

Pohlman, William Frederick (Bill)

1906

1963

1926

Wallace, William Roy

1907

1981

1927

Bateman, Wilfred Rhodes (Bill)

1907

1985

1939

Chandler, William Geoffrey (Geoff)

1908

1994

1926

McGrath, Kelvin Paul (Kel)

1908

1979

1930

Jennings, Stanley Gray (Stan)

1909

1961

1930

Anderson, Andrew (Andy)

1909

1982

1931

Luke, Robert Henry (Harry)

1909

2000

[VSF] 1930

Cromer, D'Arcy Ananda Neil

1910

2003

1930

Suttie, William Ritchie (Bill)

1910

1982

1931

Fielding, John Mervyn (Jack)

1910

1995

1932

McAdam, James Bannister (Jim)

1910

1959

1932

Thomas, Jack

1910

2003

1932

Gloe, Hans Lorns

1912

1938

1932

Cox, Edward Kenneth (Ken)

1913

1995

1932

Gilbert, John Maxwell (Max)

1913

2007

1932

Shoobridge, David William

1913

2000

1932

Clarke, Albert (Bert)

1914

2001

1935

Barrett, Philip (Phil)

1914

2003

1937

Boomsma, Clifford David

1915

2004

1937

Kay, Sylvius Clarence

1915

1948

1937

Hamilton, Charles Donald

1916

2000

1936

Unwin, Paul Thorp

1916

2008

1937

Healy, Vincent Michael (Vin)

1916

2003

1938

Bryan, Walter (Bill)

1921

2003

1945

McArthur, Alan Grant

1923

1978

1943

Key:     Narara                    NSW, Narara Forestry School

VSF                        Victorian School of Forestry, Creswick

 

 

Table 3b. Australian Forestry School since 1945

 

date of birth

obit

 

Beggs, Bruce James

1928

2013

AFS

Boden, Robert William

1935

2009

AFS

Boland, Douglas (Doug)

1947

2001

AFS

Campbell, Keith George

1922

2013

AFS

Carron, Leslie Thornley (Les)

1920

2004

AFS

Crane, Wilfred James (Wilf)

1939

1992

AFS

Cunningham, Thomas Murray

1926

2001

AFS

Eastman, Walter Henry (Wally)

1920

1993

AFS

Edgerley, Mark

1923

1988

AFS

Free, Roy Alan

1928

2014

AFS

Fryer, John

1940

2007

AFS

Gardner, Alan

1923

2009

AFS

Gentle, Stanley Wallace (Wal)

1932

1989

AFS

Grace, Donald (Don)

1928

2004

AFS

Grundy, Ian

1937

2006

AFS

Hamwood, Kenneth Ross

1941

2000

AFS

Hanson, Albert George (Bert)

1919

2005

AFS

Hawkins, Peter

1929

1982

AFS

Henry, John Lewis (Jack)

1920

2005

AFS

Henry, Neil Buchanan

1927

2009

AFS

Hewett, Peter Neil

1932

2010

AFS

Hopkins, Eric

1930

2013

AFS

Keeves, Andrew (Andy)

1927

2001

AFS

Male, Peter Seymour

1943

2012

AFS

Mannion, Edward Gordon (Ted)

1935

2014

AFS

Margules, Stanley Raymond (Ray)

1926

2013

AFS

McIntyre, George Archibald

1909

1974

AFS

Moore, Brian

1926

1960

AFS

Morwood, Robin Bilbrough

1933

1962

AFS

Muir, James Douglas (Jim)

1920

2012

AFS

Nielsen, Robert Christian (Rob)

1928

2006

AFS

O'Brien, Graham (Gubby)

1925

1993

AFS

Patton, Arthur Brian

1930

1960

AFS

Pohlman, William Frederick (Bill)

1906

1963

AFS

Pople, Geoffrey David (Geoff)

1932

2001

AFS

Price, Clive William

1923

2012

AFS

Pryor, Lindsay Dixon

1915

1998

AFS

Quain, Stephen John (Steve)

1931

2008

AFS

Reilly, James John

1938

2008

AFS

Rose, David George

1936

2006

AFS

Ryan, David (Dave)

1941

2006

AFS

Shedley, Alfred Charles

1891

1977

AFS

Smith, John Edward

1937

2011

AFS

South, Peter Moncrief

1933

2000

AFS

Sprengel, Edgar Arnold (Ed)

1924

2009

AFS

Stanley, Donald Edgar (Don)

1928

1999

AFS

Stanton, Richard Roger

1965

2015

ANU

Stewart, Barry James

1940

1976

AFS

Trevethan, Ross C.

1939

1964

AFS

Tweedy, Peter

1934

2013

AFS

van Loon, Adrian

1930

1999

AFS

Vear, Kenneth William (Ken)

1927

2007

AFS

White, Alan Edward

1938

2013

AFS

White, Anthony Hopper (Tony)

1914

1997

AFS

White, Bernard John (Barney)

1928

2000

AFS

White, Kevin Joseph (Kev)

1924

2012

AFS

Woods, Richard Vynne (Dick)

1923

2014

AFS

Banks, John Charles

1942

2004

AFS/ANU

 

 

Table 4 Foresters trained overseas

 

date of birth

obit

training

Brown, John Ednie

1848

1899

Scottish estates

Hutchins, Sir David

1850

1920

French National Forestry School

Corbin, Horace Hugh

1879

1950

University of Edinburgh

Jolly, Norman William

1882

1954

University of Oxford

Lane-Poole, Charles Edward

1885

1970

French National Forestry School

Carter, Charles Ernest

1885

1976

Yale University

Ellis, Leon Macintosh

1887

1941

Toronto

Gray, Hugh Richard (Dick)

1892

1979

University of Oxford

Dahl, Bjarne

1898

1993

Norwegian Forestry School

Grenning, Victor (Peter)

1899

1984

University of Oxford

Lindsay, Alexander Douglas (Doug)

1900

1964

University of Edinburgh

Hutchinson, Frank

1902

1982

University of Montana

Mackiewicz, Piotr

1909

1965

University of Poznan

Miller, Robert Graham

1910

2002

University of Edinburgh

Hare, John Forsyth (Jack)

1922

2010

University of Wales

Minko, George

1923

2007

University of Munich

McNamara, Patrick John

1926

1998

University of Oxford

Hervert, Vincent (Vince)

1927

2008

Trutnov Forestry School

Rowell, Michael Neville (Mike)

1927

2010

UK Thetford Forest Training School

Pearson, John Woolger

1928

1983

University of Wales

Bourke, Peter Michael

1944

1996

Oregon State University

 

 

Table 5 Australian National University and University of Melbourne

 

date of birth

obit

 

Semmens, Edwin James

1886

1980

Melb

Higgins, Malcolm

1942

1977

ANU

Bryant, Philip Joseph (Phil)

1944

1996

ANU

Malajczuk, George

1945

1997

ANU

Fabian, John David

1946

1978

ANU

Nash, Brian John

1946

1987

ANU

Byrne, Peter John (Pete)

1947

2010

ANU

Green, Geoffrey (Geoff)

1948

2013

Melb

Bills, David

1948

2014

ANU

Elsley, Ian James

1950

2005

ANU

Backen, Paul

1951

2009

ANU

Harvey, Alan Michael (Al)

1951

2009

ANU

Gooding, Graeme Hugh

1954

2009

Melb

Lewty, Mark

1957

2014

ANU

McElhinny, Christopher (Chris)

1958

2012

ANU

Crawford, Gregory James (Greg)

1960

1986

ANU

Mulholland, Seamus

1962

1996

ANU

Maher, Deirdre Kaye

1967

2011

Melb

 

Citation details

John Dargavel, 'Australia's Foresters', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/essay/17/text32330, originally published 10 November 2015, accessed 23 November 2017.

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