An Educational Institution

The Forest History Society (FHS) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit educational institution located in Durham, North Carolina. FHS links the past to the future by identifying, collecting, preserving, interpreting, and disseminating information on the history of interactions between people, forests, and their related resources: timber, water, soil, forage, fish and wildlife, recreation, and scenic or spiritual values. Through programs in research, publication, and education, the Society promotes and rewards scholarship in the fields of forest, conservation, and environmental history while reminding all of us about our important forest heritage.

“The Forest History Society is the preeminent organization supporting research and understanding of how people used and interacted with the forested ecosystems of the planet over the long sweep of human history. It’s archives, publications, and outreach programs are indispensable in advancing the knowledge of forest and conservation history worldwide.”

William J. Cronon, professor of History, Geography and Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Organizational and Financial Information

The Forest History Society operates openly and transparently. Learn more about the way we do business:

Historian Char Miller Talks About the Value of the Forest History Society

Char Miller, Director and W.M. Keck Professor of Environmental Analysis at Pomona College, talks about the importance of preserving forest history, the uniqueness of the Forest History Society, and his experiences using the Society's rich library and archival collections.

Take a Video Tour of the Forest History Society

Join Steve Anderson, former FHS president and CEO, on a guided tour through the facilities, programs, and collections of the Forest History Society.

“There is no other library that has this sort of rich archival material on forests, forestry, and conservation. For those of us who conduct research in the environmental history of the United States, and increasingly globally, the Forest History Society is the place to come.”

Char Miller, Professor of Environmental Analysis, Pomona College


Since its establishment in 1946, the Forest History Society has developed numerous programs to facilitate the dissemination of information about the history of human interaction with the environment and natural resources. Each program area supports a vital part of our mission. FHS continually seeks innovative ways of enhancing its programs and new methods for promoting the study of environmental history. FHS programs center around research, publishing, education, and fellowships and awards.


Staff & Board

Throughout our history, staff with varied backgrounds and specialized skills have helped FHS achieve its programming goals. Historians, foresters, archivists, librarians, education specialists, editors, writers, journalists, filmmakers, and administrative personnel have all contributed time and expertise to the Society's daily operations and special projects. Guided by the collective wisdom of our board of directors and led by our visionary president, the FHS staff is comprised of highly qualified individuals who work cooperatively as a group to inform societal perceptions of forest, conservation, and environmental history.


The financial support of Forest History Society members has traditionally provided the foundation upon which FHS has been able to build its programs and expand its mission. Over the years, generous gifts from philanthropists and corporations have allowed the Society to establish endowment funds that have helped ensure the longtime financial security of the organization. Today FHS operates on an annual fund basis that encourages donors to pledge an ongoing partnership with the Society that will allow FHS to continue its important mission into the future.