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Celebrating Grey Towers’ Golden Anniversary

The Pinchot legacy continues for future generations with programs offered at Grey Towers. Credit: US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

The Pinchot legacy continues for future generations with programs offered at Grey Towers. Credit: US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

A beautiful, blue stone mansion with its slate roof and turrets, known as Grey Towers, in Milford, Pa. has been a sanctuary for visitors from around the world to learn about conservation and natural resources.

Fifty years ago on Sept. 24, 1963, President John F. Kennedy dedicated the Grey Towers National Historic Site and the Pinchot Institute for Conservation Studies as a “living memorial” to America’s first forester and two-term Pennsylvania governor, Gifford Pinchot.

On Sept. 19-22, the Forest Service, the Pinchot Institute and the Grey Towers Heritage Association will celebrate Grey Towers’ golden anniversary with public and private events, receptions, lectures, honored guest speakers, public visitation and family programs. This commemoration is an opportunity for the Forest Service, and its partners and collaborators to celebrate Pinchot’s legacy and highlight the many contributions he made to the Forest Service and beyond. What better way to honor the conservation legacy of the father of American conservation than by offering the Pinchot home as a public center for tours, meetings, study and research.

President Kennedy gets approval from audience and dignitaries at Grey Towers dedication ceremonies of Pinchot Institute for Conservation Studies. Note: Others on stage --  Secretary of Agriculture Orville Freeman, Chief of the Forest Service, Edward P. Cliff,  Pres of the Conservation Foundation Samuel Ordway, and  Governor of PA, William Scranton. Credit: US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

President Kennedy gets approval from audience and dignitaries at Grey Towers dedication ceremonies of Pinchot Institute for Conservation Studies. Note: Others on stage -- Secretary of Agriculture Orville Freeman, Chief of the Forest Service, Edward P. Cliff, Pres of the Conservation Foundation Samuel Ordway, and Governor of PA, William Scranton. Credit: US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

The historical Grey Towers was first completed in 1886. Eight decades later, the site was designated as a National Historic Landmark. In 1980, more than $16 million in federal, state, and private funds were raised to complete a comprehensive restoration of the historic features and the renovation of the building and estate for “adaptive re-use” as a world-class conference center.  The Pinchot Institute for Conservation Studies, which was established on this site, has served as a center for today’s most challenging environmental issues.

President Kennedy with Dr. and Mrs. Pinchot at the Finger Bowl where historic conversations were held. Credit:  US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

President Kennedy with Dr. and Mrs. Pinchot at the Finger Bowl where historic conversations were held. Credit: US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

The Forest Service, along with its partners, is carrying out Pinchot’s legacy of “practical idealism,” and his philosophy that in order to be effective, natural resource conservation must be not only ecologically sound, but economically viable and socially responsible. To this day, Pinchot’s philosophy of providing “the greatest good for the greatest number in the long run” is the driving principle behind the Forest Service’s approach to natural resources management.

Gifford Pinchot, first chief of the US Forest Service and two-term governor of Pennsylvania. Credit:  US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

Gifford Pinchot, first chief of the US Forest Service and two-term governor of Pennsylvania. Credit: US Forest Service, Grey Towers NHS

2 Responses to “Celebrating Grey Towers’ Golden Anniversary”

  1. Chris Daley says:

    Historian William Cronin identified Gifford Pinchot with “sustainability” of our national forests-a working pragmatic land use resource ethic for timber, grazing, mineral rights, water reclamation, and yes recreation like camping/fishing/hunting. Milford near the Delaware Gap.

  2. R.kumarasamy says:

    very inspiring.

    kumarasamy
    india

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