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Inventory of the Edward Parley Cliff Papers , 1931 - 1985

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Descriptive Summary

Abstract: A career forester, Edward P. Cliff (1909-1987) moved through the ranks of the United States Forest Service, eventually serving as chief from 1962 to 1972. Following his retirement from the Forest Service, Cliff became active as a private consultant, focusing on projects involving work and travel in numerous countries.
The collection includes nine looseleaf binders that contain Xerox copies and typescripts of speeches, articles, statements, press releases, and photographs documenting Cliff's career in the U.S. Forest Service. One carton and one manuscript box contain materials accumulated by Cliff during his post-Forest Service career as an international forestry consultant; contents include reading files, reports, and papers on such topics as the 1978 Food and Agriculture Organization's mission to Nigeria, agroforestry and soil conservation in Jamaica, and tropical forestry in Africa.
Title: Edward Parley Cliff Papers, 1931 - 1985
Creator: Cliff, Edward Parley, 1909-1987.
Repository: Forest History Society Library and Archives
Call Number: 3267
Language of Material: Material in English
Extent: 2 linear feet
(1 record carton, 1 archival box)

Biographical Note

A career forester, Edward P. Cliff (1909-1987) moved through the ranks of the United States Forest Service, eventually serving as chief from 1962 to 1972. Following his retirement from the Forest Service, Cliff became active as a private consultant, focusing on projects involving work and travel in numerous countries.

Edward Parley Cliff was born September 3, 1909, in Heber City, Utah. He received from Utah State University a B.S. degree in forestry in 1931 and an honorary D.Sc. degree in 1965. He began his career as a forester with the U. S. Forest Service in 1931 as an assistant ranger of the Wenatchee National Forest in Washington state. In 1935 he was put in charge of wildlife management for the Pacific Northwest Region of Oregon. From 1939 to 1944 Cliff served as supervisor of the Siskiyou and Fremont national forests in Oregon. He was assistant chief of the Division of Range Management in Washington, D.C., from 1944 to 1946, after which he returned to his home state to serve as assistant regional forester for the Intermountain Region of Utah until 1950. In the two years following 1950, Cliff served as a regional forester for the Rocky Mountain Region of Colorado. From 1952 to 1962 he served as assistant chief of the United States Forest Service and became chief in 1962.

Serving as chief of the Forest Service from 1962 until 1972, Cliff experienced a decade of rapid change in the agency and in the country. He devoted much time to promoting a better understanding of public forest management problems with grazing interests and the timber industry, and especially with the general public. Public interest in the management of the national forests, as well as demands for numerous forest resources, expanded quickly during this era. He helped the Forest Service to develop a long-range forest research program. Important for the national forest recreationists was his vision in moving the Forest Service more into recreational improvements and programs. This shift responded to the increasing interest in hiking, camping, wilderness travel, mountain climbing, and many other national forest outdoor activities. The Wilderness Act of 1964 gave Congressional blessing to a new national wilderness preservation system and established more than nine million acres of previously designated "wild" or "wilderness" areas as the core. The Forest Service also became involved in the new Job Corps program by operating nearly 50 camps on the national forests; the nationwide natural beauty campaign; rural areas development, and the war on poverty.

Cliff was a charter member of both the American Society of Range Management and The Wildlife Society. He was a fellow of the Society of American Foresters and a member of a wide variety of forestry organizations. He was an active participant at a number of World Forestry Congresses in the 1960s and 1970s. Cliff received distinguished service awards from Utah State Univerity in 1958, the U. S. Department of Agriculture in 1962, and the Tuskegee Institute in 1970. He was also the recipient of a number of other honorary awards given by various forestry and wildlife organizations. Upon his retirement from the Forest Service, Cliff became active as a private consultant, working on projects involving work and travel in numerous countries.

Ed Cliff died in 1987.

Source: Stroud, Richard H., ed., National Leaders of American Conservation (Washington, D. C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1985), 98-99.

U.S. Forest Service Chief Ed Cliff at the Kirkland's Warbler Management Area, Huron National Forest, Michigan. June 1, 1963.

Chief Ed Cliff riding a mule. Jarabacoa, Dominican Republic, October 23, 1966. [U.S. Forest Service Headquarters History Collection.]

Secretary of Agriculture Orville L. Freeman, left and U.S. Forest Service Chief Edward P. Cliff show critical acceptance of a new book, "The National Forests of America," sponsored by the Country Beautiful Foundation. Co-author Secretary Freeman, received the first copy, October 10, 1968. [U.S. Forest Service Headquarters History Collection]


Collection Overview

The collection consists of nine looseleaf binders that contain Xerox copies and typescripts of materials documenting Cliff's career in the U.S. Forest Service. Volumes one through seven contain copies of Ed Cliff's "Speeches, Articles, Statements, Press Reports, and Photographs." The Forest History Society was one of several repositories in the United States to which Mr. Cliff sent sets of these indexed records. All photographs have been removed from the notebooks and placed in the Forest History Society Photographic Collection (in the file labeled "Cliff--from the Papers of Edward Cliff"). Terry West, Historian with the Public Affairs Office of the U. S. Forest Service, donated the final two volumes of material. One notebook is entitled "The Southern Forest Survey" and contains publications that resulted from a nationwide inventory conducted by the U. S. Forest Service in the 1950s and 1960s. The other volume is entitled "Legislative History: the Wilderness Act" and contains copies of the records of the legislative proceedings concerning Public Law 88-577.

One carton and one manuscript box contain materials accumulated by Cliff during his post-Forest Service career as an international forestry consultant; contents include reading files, reports, and papers on such topics as the 1978 Food and Agriculture Organization's mission to Nigeria, agroforestry and soil conservation in Jamaica, and tropical forestry in Africa.

Collection Arrangement

1. Speeches, Articles, Statements, Press Reports, and Photographs, 1931-1972

2. "Southern Forest Survey," 1960-1967

3. "Legislative History: the Wilderness Act," 1963-1964

4. Other Files, 1969-1985



Subject Headings

  • Agroforestry -- Jamica
  • Cliff, Edward P. (Edward Parley), 1909-1987
  • Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  • Foresters
  • Soil conservation -- Jamaica
  • Tropical forestry -- Africa
  • United States -- History -- 20th century
  • United States. Office of Price Administration
  • United States. Forest Service -- Officials and employees

Detailed Description of the Collection

1. Speeches, Articles, Statements, Press Reports, and Photographs, 1931-1972

The front of each notebook holds an index listing the contents of that particular volume.
   Volume I
August 1931 to December 1959
   Volume II
June 18, 1960 to 30 October 1963
   Volume III
January 22, 1964 to 30 April 1963
   Volume IV
May 3, 1966 to November 26, 1968
   Volume V
December 18, 1968 to June 1970
   Volume VI
June 5, 1970 to July 20, 1971
   Volume VII
August 5, 1971 to May 8, 1972

2. "Southern Forest Survey," 1960-1967

The "Southern Forest Survey" volume contains reports published the United States Forest Service. The reports reveal information on the kind, amount, and condition of forest resources, as well as information on forest industries and wood production. The records are filed under one of three headings: "Resources by State,""Industry by Region," or "Industry by State."
Resources by State
Alabama Forests (1963)
Arkansas Forests (1960)
Louisiana Forests (1965)
Mississippi Forests (1958)
East Oklahoma Forests, (1968)
Tennessee Forests (1962)
Forest Statistics for Tennessee Counties (1962)
Alabama Forests (1963)
Industry by Region
Midsouth Veneer Industry (1964)
Pole and Piling Production in the Midsouth (1962)
Pulpwood Chipping Installations in the Midsouth (1962)
Southern Pulpwood Production, 1966 (1967)
Mississippi Forest Industry (1968)
East Oaklahoma's Timber Harvest, 1964 (1966)
Louisiana: Forest Industry Statistics, 1962 (1963)
East Texas' Timber Harvest, 1964 (1966)
Forest Industries in Appalachia Counties of Tennessee (1967)

3. "Legislative History: the Wilderness Act," 1963-1964

The "Legislative History: the Wilderness Act" volume contains copies of the records of the legislative proceedings concerning Public Law 88-577. The records are indexed and arranged chronologically from January 4, 1963 to September 3, 1964. An index and a general description of the law are filed in the front of the notebook.

4. Other Files, 1969-1985

Box 1
The Al Serena Case
Al Serena Mines on the Rogue River National Forest, Oregon
"Forestry and Forest Industries in Chile: Evaluation of Project CHI/66/526." - ("Strengthening the National Forestry Programme" - Report of the Evaluation Mission UDNP/FAO June 1975 by Edward P. Cliff and David W. Joslyn)
Edward P. Cliff, Chief, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service (1962-1972) - (Statement before the Subcommittee on Housing and Urban Affairs of the Senate Committee on Banking and Commerce, March 21, l969 on spiralling prices of softwood forest products; Interim report on the OMB timber issue 1972; assessment of solar kilns for drying lumber; "Report of Forestry Institutions and Education Advisory Mission to India" by E. P. Cliff and J.D. Ovington 1977; "Timber: Timber Resources" by Edward P. Cliff, a paper highlighting the impacts of the Public Land Law Review Commission, and comments by others; "Assessment of Forest Resource Development in Honduras" by Edward P. Cliff; "World's Resources and Reserves and U.S. Policy - Timber" by Edward P. Cliff.)
AID - TA/OST Correspondence Topical Hardwoods, Etc., 1974
AID - TA/OST Correspondence Topical Hardwoods, Etc., 1975
"Overview of Opportunities for Use of Agroforestry Systems and Techniques in Combination with Other Soil Conservation Measures to Rehabilitate and Stabilize Two Critical Watersheds in Jamaica" by Edward P. Cliff, 1979
FAO Mission to Nigeria, 1978
Report and supporting papers
Reading Files
Includes publications by the United States Forest Service on such topics as tropical forest utilization, deforestation in developing countries, and housing construction; publications from other government agencies on such topics as international forest resources management, timber as a renewable resource, and tropical forest resources; and unpublished papers and reports on forestry in developing countries, agroforestry in the American South, and management of United States national forests.
"Ed Cliff's Recollections of His Time as Forest Supervisor Siskiyou National Forest, Oregon," 1980
Wooden Plaque from IX World Forestry Congress in Mexico, 1985
Box 2
Africa
Includes papers and reports of various projects and meetings dealing with economic development of Africa including forest industries. Organizations represented: FAO, World Bank, United Nations Economic Mission for Africa.

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Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Edward Parley Cliff Papers, Library and Archives, Forest History Society, Durham, NC, USA.

Processing Information

Processed by Amanda Ross, August 2008

Encoded by Amanda Ross, August 2008

Funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission supported the encoding of this finding aid. Support for digitization and outreach provided by the Alvin J. Huss Endowment.