Arkansas Research Forester Receives International and Regional Honors

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Don Bragg receives the 2018 Walter L. Brown award from Mark Christ, President of the Arkansas Historical Association. Photo by Clay Newton.

Silvicultural histories are recognized by forestry professionals from the United Kingdom to Arkansas. The Editorial Board of Forestry, an international journal of forest research, recently awarded USDA Forest Service research forester Don Bragg the 2017 Percy Stubbs, John Bolton King and Edward Garfitt Prize for Silviculture for advancing silviculture research.

Bragg received this prestigious award in recognition of his paper titled The development of uneven-aged southern pine silviculture before the Crossett Experimental Forest (Arkansas, USA).

The paper is a glimpse into early decades of sustainable forestry.

“This paper is an engaging historical review of the development of uneven-aged silviculture in Arkansas, USA during the early part of the twentieth century,” says Gary Kerr, Editor-in-Chief of Forestry. “We recommend all professional foresters in the UK set aside a couple of hours and immerse themselves in a delightful account, diligently researched, of the work of two pioneering foresters.”

“I am deeply honored by the recognition of the editors of Forestry for my paper on early silvicultural work in this remote corner of the United States,” Bragg says. “For one who loves the history of forestry – and loves to share what I learn – receiving the Silviculture Prize is immensely gratifying and encouraging.”

Bragg also received the 2018 Walter L. Brown award for Best School History given by the Arkansas Historical Association for his paper on the beginnings of Arkansas’s first and only collegiate degree program in forestry. This work is titled Growing Pains: Hank Chamberlin and the Arkansas A&M Forestry Program, 1946-1957 and was published in the 2017 issue of the Drew County Historical Journal.

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A historic photograph of an uneven-aged stand of loblolly and shortleaf pine timber on the Crossett Experimental Forest during the mid-20th century. USFS Photo.

“Southeastern Arkansas provides unique opportunities to study the development of professional forestry in the southern U.S., whether it is at the hands of two engineers turned forestry pioneers, the development of the Crossett Experimental Forest, or the founding of a new forestry education institution,” says Bragg. “Forestry has contributed so much to the State, yet its history has hardly been told —this recognition by the Arkansas Historical Association is validation of their desire to learn more, for which I am truly grateful.”

Bragg is the project leader of the SRS Southern Pine Ecology and Restoring and Managing Longleaf Pine Ecosystems research work units, with research teams in Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana, South Carolina, and Texas. His current research focus is the silviculture of naturally regenerated pine and pine-hardwood ecosystems in the southeastern U.S.

Read about the publication.

For more information, email Don Bragg at dbragg@fs.fed.us.

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