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Encyclopedia > Allegheny National Forest
Mead Run in the Allegheny National Forest
Mead Run in the Allegheny National Forest
Allegheny National Forest
IUCN Category VI (Managed Resource Protected Area)
Location Pennsylvania, USA
Nearest city Warren, PA
Coordinates 41°39′11″N 79°2′5″W / 41.65306, -79.03472
Area 512,998 acres (2,076 km²)
Established 1923
Governing body U.S. Forest Service

The Allegheny National Forest is a National Forest located in northwestern Pennsylvania. The forest covers over 500,000 acres (2,000 km²) of land. Within the forest is the Kinzua Dam, which created the Allegheny Reservoir. The administrative headquarters for the Allegheny National Forest is located in Warren, Pennsylvania. The Allegheny National Forest has two ranger stations, one in Marienville, located in Forest County, and the other in Bradford, located in McKean County. Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 533 pixelsFull resolution‎ (3,072 × 2,048 pixels, file size: 3. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 533 pixelsFull resolution‎ (3,072 × 2,048 pixels, file size: 3. ... The World Conservation Union or International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) is an international organization dedicated to natural resource conservation. ... Image File history File links Red_pog. ... Image File history File links US_Locator_Blank. ... This article is about the U.S. State. ... Warren is a city in Warren County, Pennsylvania, United States. ... Logo of the U.S. Forest Service. ... This article is on national forests in the United States. ... This article is about the U.S. State. ... The Kinzua Dam is one of the largest dams in the United States east of the Mississippi River[citation needed]. Its construction in the 1960s was controversial because it forced the departure of Pennsylvanias last Native Americans, the Senecas, who now live nearby on the northern shores of... Allegheny River watershed Much of the area through which the Allegheny River flows consists of hilly woodlands. ... Warren is a city in Warren County, Pennsylvania, United States. ... Forest County is a county located in the state of Pennsylvania. ... Bradford is a small city located in rural McKean County, Pennsylvania, in the United States 78 miles (126 km) south of Buffalo, New York. ... McKean County is a county located in the state of Pennsylvania. ...


Oil in Allegheny National Forest

Additionally, the Allegheny National Forest lies in the heart of Pennsylvania's oil and gas region, only 40 miles from the site of the first oil well in the world. In 1981, about 17% of the state's total crude oil production came from mineral rights owned by private individuals within the Forest boundary. Because of its high paraffin content, Pennsylvania crude is one of the best lubricating oils in the world. For other uses, see Paraffin (disambiguation). ...

History before 1923

Stone stairway leading down from Rimrock Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest
Stone stairway leading down from Rimrock Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest

Today the Allegheny Plateau is known for black cherry, maple and other hardwoods, but two hundred years ago these species were less numerous. Today's forest is largely the result of two things: the exploitation of timber at the turn of the century and, since 1923, 83 years of Forest Service management. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (480x640, 80 KB) Summary from http://www. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (480x640, 80 KB) Summary from http://www. ... Binomial name Prunus serotina Ehrh. ... For other uses, see Maple (disambiguation). ... Beech is a typical temperate zone hardwood The term hardwood designates wood from angiosperm trees. ...


In the 1700s, the forest in northwest Pennsylvania was mostly Eastern Hemlock and American beech, with white pine along river bottoms and oak on the slopes of river valleys. Black cherry accounted for less than one percent of all trees on the Plateau. This old-growth forest contained rich, vibrant biodiversity, and was characterized by large trees, fallen logs, and a multi-layered forest canopy. Predation by the native wolf (Canis lupus) and cougar (Puma concolor) kept deer populations at naturally-regulated low levels, estimated at ten deer per square mile. The understory vegetation was dense and richly diverse. Binomial name Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carr. ... Binomial name Fagus grandifolia Ehrenb. ... White Pine may refer to: Trees within the Pinus classification Eastern White Pine, a tree native to North America. ... Species See List of Quercus species The term oak can be used as part of the common name of any of several hundred species of trees and shrubs in the genus Quercus (from Latin oak tree), and some related genera, notably Cyclobalanopsis and Lithocarpus. ... Binomial name Prunus serotina Ehrh. ... Old growth forest, sometimes called late seral forest or ancient forest is an area of forest that has attained great age and exhibits unique biological features. ... Wolf Wolf Man Mount Wolf Wolf Prizes Wolf Spider Wolf 424 Wolf 359 Wolf Point Wolf-herring Frank Wolf Friedrich Wolf Friedrich August Wolf Hugo Wolf Johannes Wolf Julius Wolf Max Franz Joseph Cornelius Wolf Maximilian Wolf Rudolf Wolf Thomas Wolf As Name Wolf Breidenbach Wolf Hirshorn Other The call... For other uses, see Cougar (disambiguation) or Puma (disambiguation). ... This article is about the ruminent animal. ... This article is about the ruminent animal. ...

Disturbances such as tornado, blowdown, and ice storms were common natural events that created a random mosaic of small openings in the forest canopy across the landscape before the arrival of human beings to the North American continent. Later, Native Americans burned small areas of the understory of the forest in locations in order to improve berry and oak mast production, hunting, and ease of travel. This article is about the weather phenomenon. ... This article is about the people indigenous to the United States. ...

Early settlers

European settlers reached this area in the early 1800s. At first, trees were cut mostly to clear land for agriculture and provide timber for cabins and barns. Soon, the first commercial water-powered mills cut small amounts of lumber from selected pine, hemlock and large hardwoods. By 1840, portable steam engines made circular sawmills practical, and mills that could process 10,000 board feet (24 m³) of lumber per day were common. For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ... A family of Russian settlers in the Caucasus region, ca. ...

Tanneries that used hemlock bark as their source of tannin for curing leather began to appear in the late 1850s. This infant industry received a great boost by the Civil War demand for harness, military equipment and industrial belting. By the end of the century, the tanning industry was a major forest industry in Pennsylvania using huge quantities of hemlock bark. The logs were removed later and sawn into lumber products.

1850 to 1900

Between 1850 and 1900, American society and technology changed in dramatic ways. People, moving West and in the growing cities in the East, demanded lumber to build homes, stores and furniture. Demand for paper and other wood pulp products increased. An eightyfold increase in coal production led to the need for more lumber for mine props, timbers, and planks. Band saws came into use after 1880, making possible the construction of huge mills capable of sawing 100,000 feet (30 km) or more of lumber per day. Railroads provided convenient transportation to consumers and markets. They also opened up extensive and previously inaccessible areas of timber with specialized locomotives such as the Shay which could traverse steep hillsides, uneven tracks and sharp curves. All of these factors supported large sawmill and tannery industries. This article very generally discusses the customs and culture of the United States; for the culture of the United States, see arts and entertainment in the United States. ... By the mid 20th century humans had achieved a mastery of technology sufficient to leave the surface of the Earth for the first time and explore space. ... For the UK band, see Furniture (band). ... For other uses, see Paper (disambiguation). ... International Paper Company Wood pulp is the most common material used to make paper. ... Coal Example chemical structure of coal Coal (pronounced ) is a fossil fuel formed in swamp ecosystems where plant remains were saved by water and mud from oxidization and biodegradation. ... This is the top-level page of WikiProject trains Rail tracks Rail transport refers to the land transport of passengers and goods along railways or railroads. ...


By 1900, deer and their predators were almost eliminated due to overhunting. The PA Game Commission began to restore the deer herd by importing deer from other states. This article is about the ruminent animal. ... This snapping turtle is trying to make a meal of a Canada goose, but the goose is too wary. ...

A new enterprise, the wood chemical industry, changed the course of forest development. Between 1890 and 1930, wood chemical plants produced charcoal, wood alcohol, acetic acid, acetate of lime and similar products, and provided a market for virtually every size, species and quality of tree growing on the Allegheny Plateau. Harvests during this era were the most complete ever made in the area, clearing nearly every accessible tree of every size. The once vast forest of the Allegheny Plateau was almost completely removed, leaving barren hillsides as far as the eye could see. Charcoal is the blackish residue consisting of impure carbon obtained by removing water and other volatile constituents from animal and vegetation substances. ... Methanol, also known as methyl alcohol or wood alcohol, is a chemical compound with chemical formula CH3OH. It is the simplest alcohol, and is a light, volatile, colourless, flammable, poisonous liquid that is used as an antifreeze, solvent, fuel, and as a denaturant for ethyl alcohol. ... R-phrases , S-phrases , , , Flash point 43 °C Related Compounds Related carboxylic; acids Formic acid; Propionic acid; Butyric acid Related compounds acetamide; ethyl acetate; acetyl chloride; acetic anhydride; acetonitrile; acetaldehyde; ethanol; thioacetic acid; acetylcholine; acetylcholinesterase Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... An acetate, or ethanoate, is a salt or ester of acetic acid. ...

Many large forest landowners in Pennsylvania and other northeastern states simply abandoned the land and moved West in search of new forests. The land left behind often ended up on delinquent tax rolls, prompting a financial crisis for rural counties. The bare soil and logging slash made floods and wildfires a constant danger. A flood (in Old English flod, a word common to Teutonic languages; compare German Flut, Dutch vloed from the same root as is seen in flow, float) is an overflow of water, an expanse of water submerging land, a deluge. ... Fire in San Bernardino, California Mountains (image taken from the International Space Station) A wildfire, also known as a forest fire, vegetation fire, grass fire, or bushfire (in Australasia), is an uncontrolled fire in wildland often caused by lightning; other common causes are human carelessness and arson. ...


In 1911, the United States Congress passed the Weeks Act, allowing the federal government to buy land in eastern states for the establishment of National Forests. The Allegheny National Forest was established in 1923. The land was so depleted that many residents jokingly called it the "Allegheny Brush-patch". Some worried the forest would never recover. Type Bicameral Houses Senate House of Representatives President of the Senate President pro tempore Dick Cheney, (R) since January 20, 2001 Robert C. Byrd, (D) since January 4, 2007 Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, (D) since January 4, 2007 Members 535 plus 4 Delegates and 1 Resident Commissioner Political... This article describes the government of the United States. ... This article is on national forests in the United States. ...

But with low deer populations, a new forest did quickly grow. It was a different forest than the previous one, because conditions were now different. Shade-tolerant, long-lived trees like hemlock and beech gave way to sun-loving, shorter-lived species like black cherry, which readily germinated on the bare sunny ground. Cherry, red maple, black birch, and sugar maple became common species in the understory. This article is about the ruminent animal. ... For other uses, see Cherry (disambiguation). ... Binomial name Acer rubrum L. Red Maple (Acer rubrum) is also known as Swamp Maple or Soft Maple. ... Binomial name Betula lenta L. Sweet Birch (Betula lenta), also known as Cherry Birch or Black Birch, is a species of birch native to eastern North America, from southern Maine west to southernmost Ontario and southern Michigan, and south in the Appalachian Mountains to northern Georgia. ... Binomial name Acer saccharum Marshall The Sugar Maple Acer saccharum is a prominent tree in the hardwood forests of eastern North America. ... Understory (or understorey) is the term for the area of a forest which grows in the shade of the overstory or canopy. ...

Today many of the Eastern National Forests are primarily second-growth forests and different in character than National Forests in the West created from huge forest reserves of largely virgin forest. On the Allegheny National Forest, the trees are roughly the same age because they started growing about the same time and the Forest Service continues to manage the forest through a silvicultural system known as even-aged management -- a practice very closely related to clearcutting. This article is about forests as a massing of trees. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...

History after 1923

An old-growth forest of hemlock and beech once stretched along northern Pennsylvania, but heavy logging between 1890 and 1930 left only pockets of that early forest in places like Hearts Content. Since the Forest Service began to manage the Allegheny National Forest in 1923, a different forest of hardwood trees like black cherry (that are more valuable as a timber product) was established through the use of herbicides and selective fertilizing. This weeded out the "undesirable" native trees while allowing the black cherry tree to thrive.[citation needed][1]

The Forest Service brought new concepts in forest management to the Allegheny Plateau, multiple benefits and sustainability. The Organic Act of 1897 introduced the National Forest mission: to improve the forest, provide favorable conditions for water flows, and furnish a continuous supply of timber to meet people's needs. On these lands, seedlings for tomorrow's forest are the focus of forest management activities. Watersheds are managed to ensure clear water for fisheries like trout and clean drinking water for all. For other uses, see Trout (disambiguation). ...


Over time, various laws added other benefits like wilderness, heritage resources and grazing to the original idea of watershed protection and continuous timber. The Multiple-Use Sustained-Yield Act of 1960 recognized outdoor recreation, wilderness preservation, and habitat for wildlife and fisheries.

The motto "Land of Many Uses" captures the National Forest goal of a healthy, vigorous forest that provides wood products, watershed protection, a variety of wildlife habitats and recreational opportunities, not only for today, but in a sustainable way so future generations can enjoy these benefits, too.

When the Allegheny National Forest was established in 1923, the immediate challenge was nurturing the young trees growing amongst logging slash on the recently-cleared hillsides. Because of such heavy logging and mining, wildfires, floods and erosion were a threat. With care, the forests grew. Since they started growing at roughly the same time, most of the trees in today's second-growth forest on the Allegheny Plateau are the same age (70-100 years old).

1900 to 1940

Between 1900 and 1940, the young forest grew and evolved from openings to young forest to maturing forest. Each stage in forest development brought different benefits for people, wildlife and plants. Like a community, a forest is healthiest and offers the most benefits if it contains a variety of ages and species of plants and animals.

Young forests offer diverse vegetation like seedlings, saplings, wildflowers and berries. Deer, grouse, songbirds and other wildlife thrive with the abundant food and cover. Rapidly-growing trees soak up carbon, add lots of oxygen to the atmosphere, and protect soil. Taller trees shade streams, helping to regulate water temperature for aquatic life.

By the 1940s, the forest began to take on an appearance familiar to us today. The older trees provide acorns, cherries, and beech nuts for bear and turkey. Birds find sites for nests in the leafy tree crowns and plants like trillium prefer the filtered light of the maturing forest. In the 1940s, the Forest Service gradually resumed timber harvesting under strict research-based guidelines to ensure sustainability for future generations.

Abundant browse led to a dramatic increase in the deer population, which peaked in the 1940s and again in the late 1970s. Since the mid-1980s, the deer population has remained fairly constant, although at a level higher in many places than the forest can support.

Today the trees are mature and able to provide quality hardwood for furniture and other needs. Foresters deal with challenges like deer, insects, disease, drought and competing vegetation such as fern through research and careful management. A small percentage of the ANF, in select sections, will be left in its natural condition undisturbed by logging on a permanent basis, gradually progressing toward the biologically diverse old-growth condition.

Forest research

The Forest Service also established a research station for the Northeast in 1923. Soon, research scientists were studying complex relationships among vegetation, animals, soil, nutrients, weather and disease. For decades, scientists have shared both research results and management guidelines based on these results with the ANF, other public and private landowners, and other scientists.


Minister Creek runs 11.8 miles through Allegheny National Forest, and is a very popular hiking trail following the creek
Minister Creek runs 11.8 miles through Allegheny National Forest, and is a very popular hiking trail following the creek

During the 1920s, recreation on the ANF focused mostly on dispersed activities like hunting and fishing. In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps changed the face of National Forests across the country by building hundreds of recreation facilities, including Twin Lakes and Loleta Recreation Areas on the ANF. These and other facilities became popular after World War II when newly-mobile families discovered the joys of outdoor recreation. Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2816 × 2112 pixel, file size: 2. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2816 × 2112 pixel, file size: 2. ...

The creation of the Allegheny Reservoir when the Kinzua Dam was completed in 1965 brought the most dramatic change to developed recreation on the ANF. Within ten years, a tremendous development program resulted in campgrounds, boat launches, beaches, picnic areas, hiking trails and overlooks around the reservoir shoreline and elsewhere throughout the forest.

Over time, people's changing and more sophisticated expectations led to campground improvements like electricity, hot showers, and baby-changing stations. Areas to watch wildlife (Buzzard Swamp, Little Drummer), trails for cross-country skiing and motorized recreation (all-terrain vehicles, snowmobiles) and fully accessible fishing piers, trails and restrooms have been added, too. In 1984, President Ronald Reagan signed the Pennsylvania Wilderness Act into law, which designated the Hickory Creek Wilderness Area and Allegheny Islands Wilderness Area as part of the National Wilderness Preservation System. Reagan redirects here. ... For the New York State Park , see Allegany State Park. ... The National Wilderness Preservation System protects federally managed land areas that are of a pristine condition. ...

Multiple benefits, sustainability and the future

Today, the Forest Service carries out a variety of management and research activities, providing multiple benefits with a strong scientific basis. Sometimes managers must designate different locations for activities that are not compatible, such as wilderness hiking and snowmobiling. It is difficult to actually manage forest while benefiting vegetation, wildlife, recreationists, and industry. For example, those in the timber industry might argue harvesting timber provides wood products that we all use and creates openings which allow sunlight to reach the forest floor to stimulate seedlings, berries and other plants that wildlife need, thus this provides opportunities for berry pickers, birdwatchers and hunters. Environmental and conservation groups may describe this activity as greenwashing logging practices and creating patches of clearcut forests that hurt forest health. The logging and road building for the logging vehicles can pollute streams, destroy habitat, and create vectors for non-native species. Greenwash (a portmanteau of green and whitewash) is a term that environmentalists and other critics give to the activity of giving a positive public image to putatively environmentally unsound practices. ...

Defining the way a National Forest is to be managed can be controversial. The National Forest Management Act of 1976 required each National Forest to implement a Forest Plan with extensive public involvement, outlining a vision for how and where management activities will be emphasized. The ANF's initial Forest Plan, which was approved in 1986, is currently undergoing revision. The revision process began in the fall of 2003, and was expected to be complete by early 2007. Additional parcels of the ANF are expected to be recommended to Congress for permanent protection as wilderness areas under the Wilderness Act of 1964 as a result of the Forest Plan revision process. As we turn toward the 21st century, forest managers, scientists and people who value National Forests must continue to work together to care for and sustain the forest today and for the future. President Lyndon Johnson signs the Wilderness Act of 1964 in the White House Rose Garden. ...


  • USDA Forest Service - Allegheny National Forest - History

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