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George D. Davis papers

Identifier: ARL-027

Content Description

The George D. Davis papers consist of Adirondack Study Commission reports, Adirondack Park Agency records, materials related to the Commission on the Adirondacks in the 21st Century, correspondence and special reports by the Adirondack Land Trust, USDA Forest Service records and correspondence, Davis Associates project files, correspondence with the Department of Environmental Conservation and other records relating to land use management.


  • Creation: 1968 - 1994


Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.

Biographical Note

George D. Davis, born in Oneida County, New York, was a wilderness preservationist who worked for thirty years in natural resource management, land-use planning, and environmental policy at the state, national, and international level as well as in the private sector.

In 1968 he became director of the New York State Temporary Study Commission on the Future of the Adirondacks leading to a career with the Adirondack Park Agency upon its founding. He became the first professional planner for the Adirondack Park Agency in 1971 and prepared the first wilderness guidelines, maps, and plans. In 1989 he became Executive Director of the New York State Commission on the Adirondacks in the Twenty-First Century.

Davis served as Executive Director of the Wilderness Society, was the principal partner in Davis Associates, an international land-use-policy consulting firm, and president of Ecologically Sustainable Development, the nonprofit successor to Davis Associates.

In the early 1990s Davis led an international effort to develop a comprehensive land use and allocation program for the Lake Baikal watershed in Siberia and for the Ussuri River watershed in Russia and China. His work in the Baikal watershed represented a major step toward international acceptance of democratic and ecologically sustainable land use policy and economic development. He was also active in preserving land and water resources of the Miskito Indians in Nicaragua and Honduras.


6.06 Cubic Feet

7 Boxes

Language of Materials



The papers are arranged chronologically as five series:

Series 1, Adirondack Park Agency, 1968-1994.

Series 2, United States Forest Service, 1973-1981.

Series 3, Adirondack Council and Adirondack Land Trust, 1981-1992.

Series 4, Davis Associates, 1984-1993.

Series 5, Commission on the Adirondacks in the 21st Century, 1989-1991.

Custodial History

Donated by George Davis, September 1997.

On April 22, 2011, Protect the Adirondacks! placed the collection on permanent loan with Union College.

Guide to the George D. Davis papers
Matthew S. Golebiewski
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Repository Details

Part of the Adirondack Research Library Repository

897 St. David's Lane
Niskayuna NY 12309