I
Olympic National Park Historic Context
1898-1963.


The rugged terrain of Olympic National Park contains glacier-covered mountain peaks, giant trees of the coastal rain forest, and powerful rivers fed by melting snow and near-constant rain. More than 95 percent of the parks 922,651 acres is designated wilderness, accessible only by a network of trails. These connect isolated structures and small groups of buildings that date from more than a century of Euroamerican use and enjoyment of the backcountry. Roads closer to the perimeter provide access to a variety of campgrounds and viewpoints as well as the park headquarters. Most of these developments stem from the management of two federal agencies: the U.S. Forest Service (and its predecessors) and the National Park Service. Others include examples of private development, both for farming/subsistence and for recreation.

Since most of the land now included in Olympic National Park was formerly part of the Olympic National Forest, the parks early history is directly associated with the U.S. Forest Service. The origins of that agency stem from two important pieces of legislation in the 1890s. The Forest Reserve Act of 1891 allowed the President to set aside public forest lands, and within a few short years nearly 20 million acres became forest reserves. There was no means to manage these lands, however, until passage of the Organic Act on June 4, 1897. This law laid out three purposes of the forest reserves: "to improve and protect the forest . . . , [to secure] favorable conditions of water flows, and to furnish a continuous supply of timber for the use and necessities of citizens of the United States." 1  These purposes guided management of these lands until passage of the Multiple Use-Sustained Yield Act of 1960. The forest reserves were initially administered by the General Land Office in the Department of the Interior. In 1905, they were transferred to the Department of Agriculture and within a few months, the Bureau of Forestry was renamed the U.S. Forest Service. One more name change followed in 1907 when the forest reserves were renamed national forests. 2

In February 1897, President Grover Cleveland set aside another 21 million acres of forest reserves, labeled "midnight reserves" because he did this just ten days before he left office. These lands included nearly 2.2 million acres on the Olympic Peninsula where the Olympic Forest Reserve was formally established on March 1, 1898. In response to opposition both locally and in Congress, President William McKinley reduced the reserve twice, ending in July 1901 with a little more than one million acres. 3

While the Forest Service was still a relatively new agency, it was hit with the devastating fire season of 1910 that burned approximately 5 million acres in the northern Rockies, mostly in Idaho and Montana. The fires also killed eighty-five people, including seventy-eight government firefighters, and left both the survivors and the agency so traumatized that they declared all-out war on their enemy. After the 1934 fire season, despite evidence that the Forest Service was not winning this war, the agency redoubled its efforts with what became known as the 10 a.m. Policy that pushed crews to extinguish all reported fires by 10 a.m. the next day; if they failed to reach that first deadline, they were to try to have the fire out by the following morning, keeping on each fire until it was out. This labor-intensive policy required additional roads, trails, and lookouts to enable firefighters to reach the flames, and such infrastructure expanded with the public works programs of the 1930s. Thus the legacy of the 1910 fires shaped the Forest Services management practices for decades, as long as veterans of the 1910 fire season lived. 4

The Forest Services emphasis on fire prevention and suppression in subsequent decades guided developments on the national forests. Each forest district had a ranger station to serve as local headquarters for forest work. These were initially simple cabins, such as the small log building constructed at Olympus Guard Station by at least 1915. The Forest Service later began to standardize plans, not only for ranger stations but also for a variety of other structures. Most of the buildings at the present-day Elwha Ranger Station, for instance, reflect such standardized plans. A key component of the fire protection system was access to all parts of the forests, so rangers constructed a network of trails which were later supplemented with roads. They maintained equipment in fire caches established at strategic locations along the trails, such as the one found at Hayes River. While out on patrol, on foot or on horseback, the rangers either camped out or stayed in small patrol cabins or simple shelters. A system of lookout towers, set on high points with panoramic views of the forest, provided fixed points for fire watch. All of these were connected with telephones and/or radio communication to facilitate rapid reporting of fires to headquarters.

Although forest protection became a priority for the Forest Service, the agency also faced growing interest in forest recreation. This had been an unofficial "use" of the national forests virtually since their creation because local residents often went fishing, hiking, picnicking, or camping in the nearby woods. Possibilities expanded for forest use with the passage of the Mineral Springs Act in 1899 that allowed construction of public resorts at mineral springs, such as those found at Soleduck Hot Springs and Olympic Hot Springs. Three years later, the 1902 regulations expanded the uses to include recreational activities such as camping and pleasure trips. During the Forest Services first year, the 1905 regulations included permits for hotels and sanitariums, with the addition of summer cabins for the first time. These measures set the stage for the agencys increased interest in recreation in the first decades of the twentieth century. 5

The formation of the National Park Service in 1916, with its emphasis on recreation, put additional pressure on the Forest Service to expand its recreational opportunities. There had been tension between the Forest Service and those favoring national parks since the 1890s, in large part because the agency had been forced to relinquish control over thousands of square miles that had been taken for national parks. Mount Rainier National Park, for instance, was carved out of Mount Rainier Forest Reserve in 1899. In addition, Mount Olympus National Monument was established in 1909 in the heart of the Olympic National Forest, and national parks advocates lobbied for decades to convert it into a national park. Despite its change in status, the monument was administered by the Forest Service until 1934. 6

During this time when the Forest Service was feeling its way into the recreation field, tourists and back-to-nature enthusiasts already were enjoying the Olympic National Forest and other forests in the Pacific Northwest. Ranger Chris Morgenroth reported 5,000 visitors to the Olympics in 1908 and he expected this to increase to 7,000 the following year. The entire North Pacific District counted 45,000 recreational visitors in 1909. 7

Chief Forester Henry S. Graves visited the Olympic National Forest in 1914 and toured parts of the national monument. He recommended retaining the north half of the monument until its potential as a national park was determined and returning the south half to the forest. President Woodrow Wilson approved these boundary changes in May 1915. Despite this drastic reduction, Graves also recognized the recreation potential of the monument and urged that it "be protected, fostered, and developed." 8

The end of World War I unleashed a flood of recreational travelers with cars, money, and leisure time. The Forest Service responded by hiring its first "recreation engineer" in 1919. Arthur Carhart, a landscape architect with a degree from Iowa State College, developed a recreation plan for the San Isabel National Forest in Colorado, the first such plan in the nation. Two other western districts, including the North Pacific District, also hired recreation planners at this same time. In his 1921 annual report, Chief Forester William B. Greeley ranked outdoor recreation as one of the major uses of the national forests. He admitted that this stemmed not from government actions but rather from the belief of millions of Americans that national forests offered "a broad and varied field of recreational opportunity." In response to this increased interest, Congress appropriated the first money for recreational developments in FY1923. The amount remained very small throughout the 1920s, however, so most recreational development was carried out by rangers as part of their regular duties. 9

The ideas of wilderness and wilderness recreation gained momentum during the 1920s with the writings of Aldo Leopold, Robert Marshall, and others. Wilderness advocates frequently referred to such pristine areas as "primeval" or "untrammeled." 10   During a talk to the American Civic Association in Chicago in 1921, Frederick Law Olmstead contrasted urban recreational restrictions with the wilderness where the user was "untrammeled." Two years later, Marshall described one of his weekend campsites in the Adirondack Mountains: "The gathering darkness blotted out the unpleasant signs of man," he wrote. "The forest outlined against the rising moon, the deer drinking in the rippling brook, the cool wind from the West were all as they had been when the first pioneer trapper spread his blankets in the untrammeled country . . . ." 11

Chief Forester Greeley used the same terms when he addressed the wilderness issue in 1923. As the American people were enjoying the recreational value of national forests more and more, Greeley noted that some were calling for areas to be set aside not only from traditional activities, such as logging and grazing, but also from popular recreational uses including campgrounds, summer homes, and even roads. "What these people want," Greeley wrote, "is not parks but stretches of untrammeled wilderness, deliberately reserved as such, which only a few of the more hardy and 'elect' among the seekers of the out of doors can penetrate, relying upon their unaided skill in woodcraft." Greeley advised that closing any national forests to development was a complex decision, one that required careful consideration. Nonetheless, he said that the "greatest good of the greatest number in the long run undoubtedly does call for abundant opportunities for a rugged and unspoiled taking to the woods." 12

At the time Greeley discussed the possibility of wilderness areas in 1923, wilderness advocates were pushing to set aside national forest areas in both Arizona and Minnesota. The agency had been considering the wilderness issue for a couple of years by then but had yet to reserve any specific areas. Arthur Carhart had advocated wilderness designation for the Trapper's Lake area in Colorado in 1922, hoping to stave off development, but he was overruled by his superiors. He resigned before the end of the year. His ideas piqued interest, however, and just two years later part of the Gila National Forest in New Mexico was designated the first wilderness area in the United States. The Forest Service developed regulations in 1929 to allow it to administratively create wilderness areas within national forests. 13

As the concepts of both outdoor recreation and wilderness were developing within the Forest Service nationwide in the 1920's, they were being put into practice in the Pacific Northwest. The North Pacific District hired Fred W. Cleator in 1919 to work as a recreation examiner. Despite the title, Cleator was trained as a forester which helped him keep the agency's primary goals in perspective. He was based out of Portland but worked on all the district forests. The plans he helped develop during the 1920s put the district in a good position when funding finally was available in the 1930's. 14

Cleator's first project on the Olympic National Forest was a recreation plan for Lake Crescent, approved in 1921, that established campgrounds, picnic areas, parks, summer home sites, administrative sites, and a state fish hatchery on 16,600 acres. Another plan for Lake Quinault followed in 1924. The two lake recreation plans illustrate the automobile-based recreation in the Olympic National Forest. Such opportunities increased during the 1920s as the Forest Service constructed roads into other popular tourist destinations including the Elwha River and Sol Duc Hot Springs. Construction also continued on the state highway encircling the peninsula, which was finally completed in 1931. A few people, including various Forest Service officials, even advocated opening the interior with at least one road to traverse the rugged backcountry, but there was neither funding nor sufficient interest for such a massive project.

With increasing interest in a variety of recreation in the Olympic National Forest and the Mount Olympus National Monument, the Forest Service asked Fred Cleator to develop an overall management plan for both areas. He spent most of August and early September 1927 in the field, accompanied part of the time by Olympic National Forest Supervisor H. L. Plumb; guide and packer Elvin Olson; and W. C. Mumaw, president of the Olympic Development League.

The result of this extensive field survey was the development of the Recreation Atlas and accompanying map for the Olympic National Forest, better known as the Cleator Plan. It described thirteen geographic units in the Olympic National Forest with potential for recreation use. Almost half of these had existing recreation plans on file, even if little or no development had started. The bulk of the interior was included in just two areas, the proposed Mt. Olympus Snow Peaks Recreation Area and the Olympic Primitive Area (labeled on the map as the Olympic Wilderness Area). The latter area lay south and east of the East Fork Quinault River. Cleator planned for this to be a true wilderness area, fitting the wilderness standards of the period. The proposed primitive area was to remain "intact, so that immense territories of mountain fastnesses would still be left untramelled [sic]". The plan called for administrative improvements to be kept to an absolute minimum, with only trails, telephone lines, and lookouts for forest protection, and no buildings except for a few necessary rough shelters. The larger Recreation Area allowed for more extensive development. Although as the Forest Service constructed roads into other popular tourist destinations including the Elwha River and Sol Duc Hot Springs. Construction also continued on the state highway encircling the peninsula, which was finally completed in 1931. A few people, including various Forest Service officials, even advocated opening the interior with at least one road to traverse the rugged backcountry, but there was neither funding nor sufficient interest for such a massive project. 15

With increasing interest in a variety of recreation in the Olympic National Forest and the Mount Olympus National Monument, the Forest Service asked Fred Cleator to develop an overall management plan for both areas. He spent most of August and early September 1927 in the field, accompanied part of the time by Olympic National Forest Supervisor H. L. Plumb; guide and packer Elvin Olson; and W. C. Mumaw, president of the Olympic Development League. 16

The result of this extensive field survey was the development of the Recreation Atlas and accompanying map for the Olympic National Forest, better known as the Cleator Plan. It described thirteen geographic units in the Olympic National Forest with potential for recreation use. Almost half of these had existing recreation plans on file, even if little or no development had started. The bulk of the interior was included in just two areas, the proposed Mt. Olympus Snow Peaks Recreation Area and the Olympic Primitive Area (labeled on the map as the Olympic Wilderness Area). The latter area lay south and east of the East Fork Quinault River. Cleator planned for this to be a true wilderness area, fitting the wilderness standards of the period. The proposed primitive area was to remain "intact, so that immense territories of mountain fastnesses would still be left untramelled [sic]". The plan called for administrative improvements to be kept to an absolute minimum, with only trails, telephone lines, and lookouts for forest protection, and no buildings except for a few necessary rough shelters. The larger Recreation Area allowed for more extensive development. Although this was a rugged and dangerous area, given to severe storms, Cleator also saw it as "a most wonderfully attractive scenic playground." 17

Guided by Cleator as well as by national policy, the Olympic National Forest looked to expand its recreational facilities in the 1930s. It was one of the few forests nationwide that placed a high premium on outdoor recreation, ranking it second among the four traditional forest uses (timber, watershed protection, grazing, and recreation). The forest hosted more than 75,000 visitors in 1931, a big increase over earlier numbers but far below Mount Rainier (176,159 visitors) and Mount Hood (686,352 visitors) national forests. 18

The election of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in November 1932 ushered in a new era in recreation development on public lands, including the national forests. This was the depth of the Depression and by the time of Roosevelts inauguration on March 4, 1933, 13 million Americans were out of work. Unemployment was especially high among young people and, with neither experience nor skills, these young Americans stood little chance of finding work. At the same time, President Roosevelt was concerned with the condition of the nations forests and rangelands, which had suffered from years of abuse. Just over a month after taking office, Roosevelt signed the executive order creating one of the most popular of the New Deal programs, the Civilian Conservation Corps. With the CCC, the president "brought together two wasted resources, the young men and the land, in an attempt to save both." 19

With the sudden influx of CCC labor and public works funding, the Forest Service launched nearly a decade of what one historian described as "frenzied activity" in recreation development. Most forests had a backlog of such projects that guided much of the initial work. Centralized direction from the Washington Office increased after the establishment of a new Division of Recreation and Lands in 1935. Within a couple of years the agency began to standardize designs for new buildings. As the Forest Service grew into its new recreation role and started to address the needs of the "sharply mounting tide of recreationists", projects progressed from simple facilities like campgrounds to more elaborate structures like bathhouses, amphitheaters, and playgrounds. 20

The Forest Service's biggest need in the Pacific Northwest was improvements in both transportation and communication infrastructure primarily for fire fighting, so CCC crews worked on trails, roads, and telephone lines. Within a short time they expanded into what Cleator termed a "scientific recreation development program." Auto camps and picnic areas got sanitary toilets, water systems, camp tables and stoves, rustic bath houses, and community kitchens. Work in more remote areas brought improved trails, trail signs, garbage pits, and "strong, rustic mountain shelters". 21

In an ironic twist of fate, Mount Olympus National Monument was taken away from the Forest Service just as the Olympic National Forest was poised to greatly expand its recreational opportunities. President Roosevelt reorganized the government within a few months of taking office, and one result was to shift jurisdiction for national monuments to the National Park Service. Mount Olympus National Monument transferred to the Park Service on June 10, 1933. This was a bitter pill for the Forest Service to swallow and hard feelings and antagonisms persisted for many years. When the National Park Service took over actual administration of the Mount Olympus National Monument in February 1934, Owen A. Tomlinson served as the superintendent for both the monument and for Mount Rainier National Park. Day-to-day administration was handled by Preston P. Macy who had worked with Tomlinson as assistant chief ranger at Mount Rainier. Macy served as acting custodian until the fall of 1935 when he was appointed custodian for the monument. 22

One of the first tasks faced by the new administrators was to see both the lay of the land and the existing improvements (roads, trails, and structures). Macy toured the monument in May 1934 in the company of David H. Madsen, head of the National Park Service's Wildlife Division, and George A. Grant, the chief photographer for the agency. Their initial report, issued in late July, was concerned mostly with spectacular scenery, forests, and wildlife. They were also impressed with the inaccessibility of the area. Part of the problem was the poor trail system with about 150 miles of trails that were only second or third class, "wholly unsuited for the purposes of a National Park or a National Monument." 23

After years of fighting over the fate of the Olympic Peninsula, park advocates finally prevailed when President Roosevelt signed the bill creating Olympic National Park on June 29, 1938. Macy's domain nearly doubled in size from the 320,000 acres in the Mount Olympus National Monument to 634,000 acres in the new national park, with the option to expand the area to a maximum of 898,220 acres by executive proclamation. The new land area brought with it access roads, hundreds of miles of trails, and a variety of buildings. 24

The National Park Service assembled a team to survey the new park in July 1938 and to come up with the first management plan to guide development. Members of the team from the National Park Service included Macy; Tomlinson; Madsen; E. Lowell Sumner, Regional Wildlife Technician; and E. A. Davidson, Regional Landscape Architect. They were joined by Harold L. Ickes, Secretary of the Interior, and Irving Brant, Representative of the Secretary and well-known conservationist. 25

The management guidelines developed by this distinguished group emphasized preservation of the wilderness. They listed three basic reasons for the park's creation: preservation of the rain forest; protection for wildlife, especially the Roosevelt elk; and "protection of one of the finest remaining scenic and wilderness areas of the nation, with emphasis on maintenance of wilderness conditions for the benefit of future generations." This wilderness policy was to guide - and limit - all new improvements, a new concept for the National Park Service at the time. Road construction would be minimal, with emphasis instead placed on an extensive system of trails. Since visitors would be traveling by foot or horse, the new park required additional shelters, with the more popular camping areas needing either larger shelters or multiple smaller ones. 26

Macy supplemented his limited budget with help from three popular New Deal programs, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), the Public Works Administration (PWA), and the Works Progress Administration (WPA). Men from the WPA worked solely on the new park headquarters buildings in Port Angeles while crews from the other two programs worked on projects around the park. The CCC had been actively working in the adjoining Olympic National Forest since 1933 but had not extended its projects into the boundaries of the national monument. Under the direction of the Park Service, crews from two CCC camps worked on road and trail construction; maintenance of telephone lines; installation of water and sanitation systems; and construction and landscaping of campgrounds, shelters, patrol cabins, and administration buildings. 27

The National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933 established the Public Works Administration (PWA) to benefit the construction industry. Most PWA money went for public buildings, such as schools and courthouses, but some funds were designated for more modest buildings, roads and bridges, or even acquisition of privately owned lands. Olympic National Park got its first PWA allotment of $205,500 in the fall of 1938. Of this, $115,000 was allocated for construction projects. The list included the large public buildings at the park headquarters as well as a fire lookout, patrol cabins, trailside shelters, outhouses, and communication systems. The remaining $90,500 was allocated for trail construction. 28   During this time, Max Walliser began work as the park's Resident Architect on August 29, 1938. His primary focus was plans for the new headquarters, but before the end of the year, he had drawn plans for several types of patrol cabins, shelters, and outhouses as well. 29

By 1940, the national parks were in fairly good condition. The influx of relief funds had enabled the parks to make major improvements and invest in infrastructure. In addition, Congress had appropriated just over $21 million to fund the agency. The public responded with increased visits to the parks that reached a new high of more than 16,755,000 that year and over 21 million in 1941. All this changed with the American entry into World War II in December 1941. Despite the increased use of the national parks, Congress cut appropriations in half. Gas rationing depressed travel, causing a 55 percent drop in national park visits in 1942. This was the start of a difficult decade for the National Park Service. 30

In the days following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, Congress declared war on all three of the Axis powers Japan, Germany, and Italy. As the country plunged into war, fears of a full-scale Japanese invasion on the west coast spurred the development of a coastal defense system. Much of this effort was concentrated on the Olympic Peninsula, which was seen as one of the most vulnerable and essential sections of the coast because it bordered the crucial Strait of Juan de Fuca as well as provided a barrier for the strategically important facilities in Puget Sound. These included the shipyards at Bremerton, Navy intelligence facility on Bainbridge Island, Boeing plant in Seattle, and the ports at Seattle and Tacoma. The Army, Navy, and Coast Guard all mobilized in defense of this strategic region during the war. Initial actions included reactivating aging defensive facilities, installing anti-aircraft weapons, and stationing troops along the coast. 31

America's entry into World War II brought Olympic National Park and its staff into the war effort immediately. The CCC crews working on the new park headquarters shifted to building a new airfield, with the park loaning both materials and equipment for the project. Landscape Architect Frederick Leissler was detailed to advise the military on "natural arrangements for camouflage of gun emplacements." Army personnel "constantly besieged" Superintendent Macy for information about the Olympic Peninsula, and the military found the park's new topographical maps to be better than their own. 32

The park's largest role in the war effort was with the Aircraft Warning System (AWS). The U.S. Army established this program early in 1942 with observation posts in remote mountains and coastal areas not covered by conventional radar. By the end of that year, there were thirteen AWS stations operating within the park. During this time, park staff spent much of their time supplying the AWS stations in the park and maintaining both the trails and telephone lines to the stations. The strain on the staff only worsened as the war continued and rangers were called into the military, leaving the park shorthanded. This work continued until the AWS program was abruptly ended on June 1, 1944. In addition to the AWS, the military operated a second defense system along the west coast. A few months after the United States entered World War II, the U.S. Coast Guard, under the command of the Navy in the 13th Naval District, established an extensive system of lookouts along the coast of Washington and Oregon. By late April 1942, the system included twenty-six lookout stations and another thirteen lifeboat stations to cover both states. These were staffed by both military personnel and civilian volunteers who watched for suspicious activity and regularly patrolled the remote coastal beaches using guard dogs. 33

The termination of the AWS program on June 1, 1944, allowed Olympic National Park personnel to refocus on park issues and concerns. The staff, diminished by wartime enlistments, had been stretched thin with the extra work required to maintain and supply the AWS lookouts. With these demands over, they were able to start on the backlog of maintenance and construction in the park. During the summer of 1944, they repaired sanitary facilities and camp fireplaces at several shelters and campgrounds and completed some smaller projects at park headquarters. Similar projects continued in the following summer. 34

Tourist visits to the national parks were already up in 1945, even before the war ended in August, and they continued to rise over the next few years. Despite this increase in use of the parks, Congress kept appropriations at stagnant war levels through FY1946. After a brief spike to $26 million in FY1947, the appropriation fell to just $10 million the following year and did not increase notably until FY1950. Director Newton B. Drury issued a bleak forecast in 1949, with estimated needs for physical improvements ($140 million), roads and trails ($175 million) and parkways already authorized by Congress ($181 million). Congress responded with an appropriation of just $14 million that year. 35

With little money and increasing numbers of visitors, the staff at Olympic National Park struggled to stay afloat during the late 1940s and early 1950s. They continued with the backlog of maintenance and repair work on buildings throughout the park. Crews also improved auto campgrounds to accommodate the greater number of car campers and day picnickers. In 1948, for instance, the staff replaced picnic tables, repaired or replaced camp stoves, and generally cleaned up the popular Elwha and Altair campgrounds. The park also addressed the need for additional facilities in the back country and along trails by constructing fifteen new shelters between 1949 and 1951. 36

This difficult situation nationwide did not immediately improve during the early 1950s when budgets for the national parks remained low and visitation increased dramatically. While the national park system was designed to handle 25 million visitors annually, the number of park visits hit 37 million in 1951 and then soared to nearly 55 million in 1956. Clearly something had to be done. This led to an ambitious program, developed in 1955, both to study park needs and to expand and upgrade accommodations. The effort, named Mission 66, was to culminate in 1966 on the 50th anniversary of the National Park Service. The total cost was expected to reach $786 million and the heretofore stingy Congress supported the program with generous appropriations which started at nearly $49 million in FY1956 and reached close to $80 million three years later. 37

During this transition period, Fred J. Overly succeeded longtime Olympic National Park Superintendent Preston P. Macy in September 1951. For most of the next seven years, Overly moved the park away from its founding principles of wilderness and more toward a vision of the park as a playground for visitors. In his 1952 Master Plan, he suggested that it would be appropriate to have "some slight sacrifice of the Wilderness theme in order that full use and enjoyment by the public would be possible." 38   Overly supported the development of new roads within the park to open it for easy visitor access. Under the Mission 66 program, he found the perfect vehicle to further his development plans. During his tenure, he completed the major road system along Hurricane Ridge as far as Obstruction Peak, at a cost of more than $3.3 million. He used the timber salvaged along the right-of-way to build the Pioneer Memorial Museum at park headquarters. Other salvage logging within the park, authorized by Director Conrad L. Wirth but universally denounced by park supporters, raised funds to buy private lands to add to the park. In addition to the roads, construction during the 1950s included pit toilets and comfort stations; water systems; radio and power systems; campground developments, improvements, and repairs; five trailside shelters; Kalaloch Ranger Station; garage and repair shop, equipment storage building, and employee housing at headquarters; and the Hurricane Visitor Center. The total cost of all of these projects, from 1951-1958, was almost $679,000. 39

After the tumultuous years and expanded building program of Overly's tenure, relative calm returned to Olympic National Park with the next two superintendents, Daniel B. Beard (1958-1959) and John E. Doerr (1960-1964). By 1959, visitation to the park had increased to more than one million people each year, making Olympic one of the most popular parks in the system. This included larger numbers heading to the back country, mostly on foot. A committee made an extensive study of conditions in the park's interior in 1958. Their report, released in January 1960, included existing facilities and recommended needs for both shelters and patrol cabins. During the next four years, the back country received special emphasis as the park worked under the Mission 66 program to increase visitor accommodations. Nationwide, the Student Conservation Program, later known as the Student Conservation Association (SCA), was started in 1957 under Mission 66. The SCA brought student volunteers into parks both to supplement regular park staff and to provide the students with a variety of work experience. The program, supervised locally by Jack Dolstad, built the first SCA shelter, equipped with four bunks, in 1959 and also repaired other shelters. The following year, they added two more shelters at Sand Point and followed with three others before the end of 1963. A crew of park day laborers built eight more shelters during 1963; seven more had been planned but were never built. Another volunteer program, the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) provided opportunities for teenagers to work in the national parks. Among the many projects undertaken by the YCC in Olympic National Park was the construction of Toleak Point shelter in 1971. This was the last new shelter built in the park. 40

In the nearly seventy years since its creation as a national park, Olympic National Park has faced many challenges. The Park Service took over the area after it had been managed for more than thirty years by the Forest Service whose mission concentrated more on resource extraction and protection than on recreation. Once the area was designated a national park, it lived for many years in the figurative shadow of the larger and better known Mount Rainier National Park. Diminished budgets and staffing levels, certainly not unique to Olympic National Park, nonetheless slowed recreational development, as did the military use of the park during World War II. Perhaps the biggest challenge for park managers, however, one that continues today, has been the park's emphasis on wilderness that has guided the development and use of Olympic National Park in ways found in few other parks. As the definition of wilderness has evolved, especially since passage of the 1964 Wilderness Act, the Park Service has had to balance the wilderness ideal with visitor safety, pristine wilderness with preservation of an historic legacy of trails, bridges, ranger stations and historic structures. At Olympic National Park, designated wilderness in 1988, the debate over these priorities continues today.



1   Harold K. Steen, The U.S. Forest Service: A History (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1991), 36
2   Steen, The U.S. Forest Service, 26-36, 324-325.
3   Hal K. Rothman, American Eden: The Administrative History of Olympic National Park (National Park Service, 2005, final draft), 30-33.
4   Stephen J. Pyne, Year of the Fires: The Story of the Great Fires of 1910 (New York: Penguin Books, 2001), 201, 215, 253, 256-268; Elers Koch, "History of the 1910 Forest Fires in Idaho and Western Montana", 22, typed ms. on file, Supervisors Office, Kootenai National Forest, Libby, Montana.
5   William C. Tweed, A History of Outdoor Recreation Development in National Forests, 1891-1942 (Clemson, S. C.: Clemson University Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management, c. 1978), 1-2; Elizabeth Gail Throop, "Recreation Development in the National Forests in Oregon and Washington, 1905-1945" (unpublished ms, 1996), 2.
6   Tweed, A History of Outdoor Recreation Development, 5.
7   Chris L. Morgenroth, "The Olympic National Forest and immediate surroundings", December 1908, 22-23, RG 95, Olympic National Forest, History Files ca. 1899-1900, box 3, file: Olympic National Forest History, NA-PNR; Tweed, A History of Outdoor Recreation Development, 3.
8   David Louter, "The Forest before the Park: The Historic Context of the Trail System of Olympic National Park, 1898-1938", draft, n.d., 17-18.
9   Tweed, A History of Outdoor Recreation Development, 8, 10-11; Steen, The U.S. Forest Service, 154; Chief Forester, as quoted in Kenneth O. Maughan, Recreational Development in the National Forests, Technical Publication No. 45, Bulletin of the New York State College of Forestry at Syracuse University, 7 (May 1934), 24-25; Throop, "Recreation Development in the National Forests", 6-7, 22, 62.
10   The origin of the word untrammeled come from the work "trammel", which is a shackle used for making a horse amble. It is a retraint, or something to impede freedom of movement.
11   Douglas Scott, "The Meaning of the Word Untrammeled" in the Wilderness Act of 1964, Draft, Pew Wilderness Center, 17 October 2000, 12.
12   William B. Greeley, Report of the Forester, 1923, 39-40.
13   Rothman, American Eden, 58; Tweed, A History of Outdoor Recreation Development, 8, 10-11; Steen, The U.S. Forest Service, 152-155.
14   Tweed, A History of Outdoor Recreation Development, 5; Louter, "The Forest before the Park", 24.
15   Fred W. Cleator, "Recreational Facilities of the Olympic National Forest and Forest Service Plan of Development", (University of Washington) Forest Club Quarterly 10 (Winter 1936-1937), 6;
Louter, "The Forest before the Park", 24; Gail H. E. Evans, Historic Resource Study, Olympic National Park, Washington (Seattle: National Park Service, Pacific Northwest Region, 1983), 206, 221.
16   F. W. Cleator, "Field Diary and Travel Record", Aug. 1 to Aug. 31, 1927 and Sept. 2 to Oct. 18, 1927, RG 95, Historical Collection, ca. 1902-1985, box 38, NA-PNR.
17   Cleator, "Recreational Facilities of the Olympic National Forest", 2-3, 6-7; F. W. Cleator, Recreation Atlas, Olympic National Forest, 25 May 1929, RG 95, Olympic National Forest, map case 5, NA-PNR, 3.
18   Maughan, Recreational Development, table following 36, table following 146.
19   Executive Order #6101 established the agency officially known as Emergency Conservation Work, which quickly became known by the name supplied by Roosevelt, the Civilian Conservation Corps. John A. Salmond, The Civilian Conservation Corps, 1933-1942: A New Deal Case Study (Durham: Duke University Press, 1967), 3-4; Throop, Recreation Development in the National Forests, 12-13.
20   Tweed, A History of Outdoor Recreation Development, 16-20; Steen, The U.S. Forest Service, 199-209; Throop, Recreation Development in the National Forests, 8-10.
21   Evans, Historic Resource Study, 334-339; F. W. Cleator, "Recreation Work of the U.S. Forest Service In the Pacific Northwest", 14 March 1936, RG 95, Historical Collection ca. 1902-1985, box 56, file: L-Recreation 1936, NA-PNR, 2-3; A. E. Glover, North Pacific Region General Inspection Report for CCC Work Camp Elwha, F-17, 18 December 1934, 1-9, RG 95, Historical Collection ca. 1902-1985, box 58, file: U-Inspection-Olympic [1933-1938], NA-PNR.
22   Cleator, "Recreational Facilities of the Olympic National Forest", 7-8; Rothman, American Eden, 64, 89.
23   Preston P. Macy, George A. Grant, and David H. Madsen, "Primary Report on Mt. Olympus National Monument", 28 July 1934, Preston P. Macy Papers, Accession No. 3211, box 1, file 32, University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections Division, 3, 6.
24   Rothman, American Eden, 85.
25   National Park Service, "Statement of Controlling Development Policies", [ca. 1938], B-1, OLYM-621, Olympic National Park Archives.
26   Ibid., B-2 - B-4; Ickes quoted in Evans, Historic Resource Study, 222.
27   Evans, Historic Resource Study, 347-351.
28   Preston P. Macy, Narrative Report [hereafter called Superintendents Narrative Report], 3 October 1938, 1, 3 November 1938, 1, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 5, 1938, Olympic National Park Archives; Evans, Historic Resource Study, 361-362.
29   Superintendents Narrative Report, [no date, ca. November 1938], 1-3, 2 December 1938, 2-3, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 5, 1938, Olympic National Park Archives.
30   John Ise, Our National Park Policy: A Critical History (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1961), 444-448.
31   Evans, Historic Resource Study, 377-379.
32   Superintendents Narrative Report, 9 January 1942, 1-3, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 9, 1942, Olympic National Park Archives.
33   Evans, Historic Resource Study, 379, 388-391.
34   Superintendent's Narrative Report, 12 June 1944, 5, 9 August 1944, 2, 13 September 1944, 2, 5-6, 11 October 1944, 6, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 11, 1944, Olympic National Park Archives; Superintendents Narrative Report, 13 September 1945, 3-4, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 12, 1945, Olympic National Park Archives.
35   Ise, Our National Park Policy, 455.
36   Preston P. Macy, Memorandum for the Director, 18 August 1948, 1-2, Accession No. OLYM-438, Catalog No. OLYM 18405, box 3, file 3/3, Olympic National Park Archives; Superintendent's Narrative Report, 12 October 1949, 2, 10 November 1949, 3, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 16, 1949, Olympic National Park Archives; Superintendent's Narrative Report, 14 June 1951, 3, 12 July 1951, 2, 13 August 1951, 2, 10 October 1951, 2, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 18, 1951, Olympic National Park Archives.
37   Ise, Our National Park Policy, 534-547.
38   1952 Master Plan, as quoted in Guy Fringer, Olympic National Park: An Administrative History (Seattle: National Park Service, Pacific Northwest Region, 1990), 97.
39   Ise, Our National Park Policy, 554-555; Rothman, American Eden, 105-109; Clifford B. Petersen, Park Engineer, Olympic National Park, Construction Projects Tabulation, September, 1951 to February 20, 1958, 1-5, Fred Overly Papers, Accession No. 2214, box 2, file 12, University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections Division.
40   Ray W. Murphy, chairman, Back Country Study Committee, Olympic Back Country Study, January 1960, 1, 8, 15-17, OLYM-463, Olympic National Park Archives; Historic Property Inventory Report for Toleak Point Shelter, recorded 18 December 2006; Superintendents Narrative Report, June 1960, 6, July 1960, 8, August 1960, 7 Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 26, 1960, Olympic National Park Archives; Superintendents Narrative Report, July 1962, 6, August 1962, 8, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 28, 1962, Olympic National Park Archives; Superintendents Narrative Report, June 1963, 8, July 1963, 8, August 1963, 6, 8, September 1963, 8, October 1963, 6, Accession No. OLYM-420, Catalog No. OLYM-18242, box 1, file: 29, 1963, Olympic National Park Archives.



Table of Contents spacer Table of Contents spacer Building Development