Guide to the A. Chase Ambler Book Collection, 1902-2005

Summary Information

Title: A. Chase Ambler Book Collection, 1902-2005
Collection: AC.426
Extent: 0.25 linear feet (1 box)
Abstract:

A. Chase Ambler Book Collection consists of six bound volumes addressing the early unsuccessful movement to establish of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park at the turn of the Twentieth Century.

Creator: Ambler, A. Chase

Biographical/Historical Note

Chase P. Ambler (1865-1932) was instrumental in the first movement in establishing the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the early Twentieth Century. He was born to Peter and Delilah Yengling Ambler in Salem Oregon. In 1889, he graduated from Western Reserve University. As a medical doctor, he did post-graduate work at New York Polyclinic. He was extremely interested in the promotion of health and founded a tuberculosis hospital and as president of the Buncombe County Medical Society, worked for meat and milk inspection. In the early Twentieth Century, he convinced the Sisters of Mercy to open a sanatorium named St. Joseph's in Asheville. He later worked at Meriwether Sanitarium until he founded Ambler Heights Sanitarium, which he owned and directed. He also served as Asheville School physician from 1913 to 1924 and directed the Asheville Board of Trade for twelve years.

Chronology List

Early 1880s Rev. Drayton Canario Smith, of Franklin, North Caroilna, advocated establishing a national park in the southern Appalachian Mountains
29 October 1885 Dr. Henry O. Marcy, of Boston, Massachusetts, read a paper to the American Academy of Medicine stating the government should secure land in Western North Carolina
19 December 1899 "Memorial to the Congress of the United States from the Appalachian National Park Association adopted December 19, 1899" submitted to the U.S. Congress
6 March 1899 Good Roads Association of Asheville and Buncombe County organized
7 October 1899 Asheville Board of Trade adopted a petition calling for the establishment of a Southern National Park
23 November 1899 Appalachian National Park Association was officially organized
2 January 1900 "Memorial of the Appalachian National Park Association" was referred to the Committee of Agriculture
21 April 1900 Senator Jeter Pritchard of Madison County, North Carolina introduced a bill to fund a preliminary investigation. It became law on 26 April 1900
1901 Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia passed bills to give the federal government the right to acquire lands for a forest reserve and exempt it from taxation
1903 House Speaker David Henson obstructed any measures for a national park or reserve
1 March 1911 The National Forest Reserve Commission was established and the Weeks Law, which permitted the government to purchase forest lands from individuals, passed
1912 First tract of land purchased in Curtis Creek, near Old Fort, North Carolina
1916 The National Park Service and the National Parks Association were established
1923 The second movement to establish a national park begins
1924 The National Park Service appointed the Southern Appalachian National Park Committee to investigate potential sites
22 May 1926 Congress passed a bill to establish national parks in the Great Smoky Mountains and the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia (Shenandoah National Park)
2 September 1940 President Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Scope and Contents

A. Chase Ambler Book Collection consists of six bound volumes addressing the early unsuccessful movement to establish of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park at the turn of the Twentieth Century.

Arrangement

The books are arranged alphabetically.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for use in the Dougherty Reading Room. An appointment for research is recommended. The Dougherty Reading Room is located on the 4th floor of Belk Library in Special Collections.

Acquisitions Information

A. Chase Ambler, grandchild of Chase P. Ambler, donated seven publications to the W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection on 25 February 2008. Each originally had its own catalog entry until combined into one manuscript collection, AC.426: A. Chase Ambler Collection of Books. This manuscript collection's accession number is 08-33. The original titles are "Appalachian Forest Reserve: Proceedings of the Convention held 25 October 1902, at Asheville, N.C.," "The Appalachian National Park Movement, 1885-1901," "A Brief History of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Movement in North Carolina," "The Campaign for the National Park in Western North Carolina, 1885-1940," "The First Movement for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, 1885-1923," and "Presentation to North Carolina Historical Commission." It was opened to the public in September 2008.

Processing Information

Processed by Kathryn Staley, September 2008; Encoded by Kathryn Staley, September 2008

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], AC.426: A. Chase Ambler Book Collection, W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina, USA.

Container List

Collection 426. A. Chase Ambler Collection of Books. (1902-2005)
"Appalachian Forest Reserve: Proceedings of the Convention held 25 October 1902, at Asheville, N.C." includes the addresses of United States President Rutherford P. Hayes, Colonel B.R. Strong of Knoxville, Tennessee, Chase P. Ambler, and Professor Holmes. It details the history of the Appalachian National Forest Reserve, an early organization which worked towards establishing a national park, as well as describes the physical attributes of the Great Smoky Mountain area. A financial report, a timeline, list of attendees, and resolutions are also included.
"The Appalachian National Park Movement, 1885-1901" was published in The North Carolina Historical Review in Volume XXXVII, Number 1 in January 1960. It was written by Charles Dennis Smith, the project engineer of Mitre Corportation, Lexington, Massachusetts, and covers the events, political and public response, and media coverage of the early movement to develop a national park in the Great Smoky Mountains.
"A Brief History of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Movement in North Carolina" was written by George W. McCoy in 1940.
"The Campaign for the National Park in Western North Carolina, 1885-1940" is a 1973 master's thesis written by Western Carolina University history student Jesse R. Lankford. Lankford subsequently became North Carolina's State Archives and Records Administrator.
"The First Movement for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, 1885-1923" was written by A. Chase Ambler, Jr. in February 2005. This includes a timeline of events with footnotes, analysis, photographs, and a reprint of the "Memorial to the Congress of the United States from the Appalachian National Park Association adopted December 19, 1899." This reprint is the first petition to create a national park in the Great Smoky Mountains.
"North Carolina's Role in the Establishment of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park" was written by Willard B. Gatewood, an East Carolina College professor, for The North Carolina Historical Review in Volume XXXVII, Number 2, in April 1960. Gatewood describes the early Twentieth Century movement to create a national park and includes photographs in the article.
"Presentation to North Carolina Historical Commission" was compiled from the existing records of the Appalachian National Park Association and the Appalachian National Forest Reserve Association in 1929 to give to the North Carolina Historical Commission. These records, together with a report from the North Carolina Geological and Economic Survey, were re-typed into one document.
Box Folder
1 1 "Appalachian Forest Reserve: Proceedings of the Convention held 25 October 1902, at Asheville, N.C."
  2 "The Appalachian National Park Movement, 1885-1901." (1960)
  3 "A Brief History of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Movement in North Carolina." (1940)
  4 "The Campaign for the National Park in Western North Carolina, 1885-1940." (1973)
  5 "The First Movement for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, 1885-1923." (2005)
  6 "North Carolina's Role in the Establishment of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park." (1960)
  7 "Presentation to North Carolina Historical Commission." (1929)