Conservation Timeline

This timeline emphasizes the Ballinger-Pinchot Controversy.
1896Gifford Pinchot appointed to the National Forest Commission by Grover Cleveland
1898Pinchot put in charge of the Division of Forestry (later renamed the Forest Service) by President McKinley
1902Reclamation Act Passed--gave Secretary of the Interior power to select and construct irrigation projects funded from the sale of public Western lands. Became a central feature of the conservation movement
1905Pinchot shifted control of the national forest reserves and mineral entries to the Division of Forestry.
1907Richard Ballinger made Commissioner of the General Land Office
1908Taft elected President. Taft and Pinchot immediately clash over conservation policy.
1909(January) Ballinger offered Secretary of the Interior position by Taft.
1909(February) Roosevelt asked Congress for money to continue the National Conservation Commission and was denied.
1909(March) Indian reservations withdrawn and reserved as national forests under the jurisdiction of the Forest Service. Ballinger refused to recognize Forest Service’s authority.
1909(Summer) National Conservation Association organized by Pinchot. Attempted to win public support for Roosevelt’s conservation policies.
1909(early Fall) Agent of the Department of the Interior Louis Glavis charged Ballinger with wrongdoing in processing an Alaskan coal claim. Pinchot supports Glavis.
1909(November) "Collier’s" magazine publishes Glavis charges. Pinchot-Ballinger controversy becomes known nation-wide.
1910(January) Ballinger invited an investigation into his actions. Pinchot had Senator Dolliver read a defense of the Forest Service criticizing Ballinger and Taft. Taft fires Pinchot for insubordination.
1910(April 11th) Pinchot meets Roosevelt in Italy to discuss politics and to convince T.R. to run for president.
1910(April) Ballinger cleared of misconduct by Congress along partisan lines.
1910(Summer) Pinchot published The Fight for Conservation in which he advocated the necessity for conservation to enter the political arena. This work influenced T.R.
1911(January 21st) The formal organization of the National Progressive Republican League (NPRL) set up.
1911(March) Ballinger resigns citing health problems.
1912(June 21st) Teddy Roosevelt announced his willingness to accept the Progressive Nomination.
1912(August 5th) First Progressive Convention held in Chicago.
1912(November 5th) Election of 1912. Democratic candidate Woodrow Wilson wins presidency.
1940Secretary of the Interior Harold L. Ickes reexamines Pinchot-Ballinger Controversy. Ickes exonerated Ballinger while he blamed Pinchot for framing Ballinger.