70 years ago today, the Conservation Foundation was established to support the New York Zoological Society’s ever-expanding conservation program.
CF funded courses in conservation study, educational films and radio programs, publications, and workshops. It also funded scientific research on natural resources, including the work cited by Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring (1962).
Although CF was closely affiliated with NYZS, and they jointly sponsored many wildlife conservation projects in the 1950s and 1960s, it was an independent organization from the start. In later years, the Foundation’s work turned more toward human environmental problems associated with development and away from wildlife conservation. In 1965, under the presidency of Russell Train, it moved its offices to Washington, DC and later became an affiliate of the World Wildlife Fund.
Shown is the Conservation Foundation’s logo and statement of purpose from an annual report held in WCS Archives Collection 1029. Processing for this collection was made possible by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) Access to Historical Records grant program.
The Wildlife Conservation Society Library and Archives is pleased to announce that we have completed a major project to process 15 significant historical collections from our holdings. Among these are three collections related to the Department of Tropical Research, a team of scientists and artists who led pioneering ecological expeditions across tropical regions from the 1910s through the 1960s. Also included are the records of Fairfield Osborn, former President of the New York Zoological Society (as WCS was previously known) and one of the foremost conservationists of the mid-twentieth century.
In addition, the newly processed collections hold records created by Bronx Zoo General Curator Lee S. Crandall; Bronx Zoo and New York Aquarium Director James Oliver; NYZS President Robert G. Goelet, Director of Conservation F. Wayne King, and Assistant Secretary Harold C. Palmer; and NYZS’s Ornithology, Education, and Public Affairs Departments.
Together these collections cover pivotal events in the history of WCS that also represent important moments and trends in the cultural and scientific histories of New York City, the US, and the world.
Finding aids for the collections can be found here. Information about accessing our collections is available here.
This project was made possible by funding from the National Archives’ National Historical Publications and Records Commission. The WCS Library and Archives is grateful to NHPRC for their support.
In addition to being Pi Day, today is also Learn About Butterflies Day! Learn about the life cycle of the butterfly from this drawing by the Department of Tropical Research done at their research station in Simla, Trinidad. When this was drawn on February 18, 1951, the scientific name of the butterfly depicted was “Telegonus alardus,” and today it is known as “Astraptes alardus,” the Frosted Flasher.