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Bob Howe and Bill Brown, Part 1
Bob Howe and Bill Brown

Bob Howe and Bill Brown were interviewed on May 6, 1991 by William Schneider at Bob's house on the Salmon River in Gustavus, Alaska. This was a small log cabin set in a field abutting a cow pasture. The living room looked out on the river. Bookshelves were numerous and contained such titles as, Does One Way of Life Have to Die So Another Can Live, Barry Lopez's new book Crossing Open Ground, and Walden II. Directly in back of where Bob and Bill were seated hung a picture of a Russian Orthodox Church. Over the door was a pair of snowshoes. A radio tuned to marine weather, binoculars, and a bird identification book on the table pointed to Bob's orientation as an outdoorsman. In this first part of a two part interview, Bob and Bill talk about their experiences working for the National Park Service in Alaska where they worked together on park planning related to new conservation units established by the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) of 1980. They focus on their experiences with Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve. They discuss relationships with the local people in the Yukon-Charley area, doing field work to survey the area, and working with National Park Service employees and politicians. They also talk about changes to park units in Alaska and trying to work with or change existing National Park Service policies and regulations.

Digital Asset Information

Archive #: Oral History 91-22-01

Project: Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve
Date of Interview: May 6, 1991
Narrator(s): Bill Brown , Bob Howe
Interviewer(s): Bill Schneider
Location of Interview:
Location of Topic:
Funding Partners:
National Park Service
Alternate Transcripts
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1) How they met each other and the early history of the Alaska Task Force

2) Their first trip through Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve, and their intent to provide some continuity in the planning process from an on the ground perspective

3) Bill Brown talks about how they viewed their work, and friends they made

4) What they tried to convey about Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve

5) Bob Howe talks about some of the concerns people had about the park

6) Bill Brown talks about the concerns that led up to the Alaska National Interest Lands legislation, and what would eventually make the Alaska parks unique from others in the national park system

7) Bob Howe talks about how his earlier jobs in the National Park Service prepared him for Yukon-Charley

8) Bill Brown talks about the sort of preparation Bob's background gave him in terms of getting along with local people

9) Bob Howe talks about the intitial park proposals, and the signing of the Monuments Proclamation

10) Bill Brown talks about expansion of the park service system in Alaska

11) Bill Brown talks about how administration of "bridge" proclamations were intended to give Congress time to act, but also threw Alaska under Lower 48 type of National Park Service regulations

12) Monument Proclamation

13) Bill Brown talks about an episode when he, John Cook, and Doug Warnock visited Eagle after the Monument protests

14) Bill Brown talks about Bob Howe's field expertise, and the experiences they had in Yukon-Charley

15) Bob Howe talks about a field expedition he took up the Kandik River

16) Continuation of Bob Howe talking about his and Rick Caulfield's trip up the Kandik River

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Section 1: National Park Service - planning\ Brown, Bill\ Howe, Bob\ Swem, Ted\ Henson, Al\ Alaska Task Force\ Yukon-Charley\ Trexler, Keith\ Caulfield, Rick\ Eagle\ Yukon-Charley - planning\ Eagle - attitudes|

Section 2: Yukon-Charley - planning\ "The Funny Book"\ Howe, Bob\ Caulfield, Rick\ Yukon-Charley - public relations\ Brown, Bill|

Section 3: Eagle - attitudes\ Yukon-Charley - early goals\ public relations\ Waller, Sarge\ Potts, Mike\ Ulvi, Dana\ Gaudio, Little John\ Eagle\ Han Athabascan\ Juneby, Willie\ Scott, Elva\ Scott, Jim\ Waugh, Julie\ Waugh, Hal\ Waller, Louise|

Section 4: Yukon-Charley - early goals\ resources - development\ local versus national concerns\ preservation|

Section 5: public relations\ BLM\ fire-fighting\ National Park Service - attitudes towards\ regulations\ lifestyles|

Section 6: ANCSA\ BLM\ Statehood Act\ public lands\ lifestyle - subsistence\ trapping\ regulations - flexibility\ subsistence - perpetuation\ ANILCA\ subsistence - cultural value\ "paper merchants"\ resources - development\ Yukon-Charley - management\ permits|

Section 7: Howe, Bob\ Nachez Trace Parkway\ Acadia National Park\ Blue Ridge Parkway\ Yellowstone\ Glacier Bay\ public relations|

Section 8: Henson, Al\ Howe, Bob\ Yukon-Charley - planning\ National Park Service - public relations\ Caulfield, Rick\ lifestyles - subsistence\ public relations\ Eagle - attitudes|

Section 9: seasonal employees\ Yukon-Charley - organizational planning\ Brown, Bill\ Eagle\ Monuments Proclamation\ public relations|

Section 10: Rutter, John\ National Park Service - history in Alaska\ National Parks Service - administrative history\ lands - selection\ Swem, Ted\ ANCSA\ D-2\ Hartzog, George\ Trexler, Keith\ National Park Service - funding\ legislation - federal lands\ Alaska Task Force\ Alaska Environmental Information and Data Center\ Newman, Stell|

Section 11: Cook, John\ conservation units \ Carter, Jimmy\ Andrus, Cecil\ legislation - federal lands\ Monuments Proclamation\ D-2\ Gravel, Mike\ National Park Service - history in Alaska\ Antiquities Act of 1906\ Wrangell-Saint Elias\ Alaska - attitudes\ National Park Service - policy\ regulations - flexibility\ trapping\ hunting\ lifestyles - subsistence|

Section 12: Eagle - attitudes\ Circle\ Gilbert, Chuck\ fish camps\ National Park Service - history in Alaska\ D-2\ subsistence - perpetuation\ ANILCA\ Cook, John\ National Park Service - Alaska Regional Office\ National Park Service - management\ public relations\ National Park Service - personnel\ monuments Proclamation\ hunting\ regulations - enforcement\ lifestyles - Alaska\ legislation - federal lands|

Section 13: Cook, John\ Eagle - attitudes\ Brown, Bill\ Yukon-Charley - history\ Warnock, Doug\ Helmers' Roadhouse\ Antiquities Act - protest\ Waugh, Julie\ Scott, Ed\ Scott, Elva\ Eagle Village|

Section 14: Howe, Bob\ Caulfield, Rick\ Brown, Bill\ dog mushing\ Nation Townsite\ winter travel\ Potts, Mike\ Ulvi, Steve\ summer travel|

Section 15: Howe, Bob\ Caulfield, Rick\ Kandik River - canoeing\ Yukon-Charley - planning\ Native lands\ "Crazy Fred"|

Section 16: Howe, Bob\ Caulfield, Rick\ grizzly bear\ Kandik River|