Some very old records of State Forest Department were recovered from the record room of State Forest Research Institute in 2005. These records/books/reports/documents pertain to the period from the year 1861 onwards when the Imperial Forest Department was established in Central Provinces and Berar. These historical documents reflect the rich heritage of forests, their management systems and the forest dwellers. Some 1,000 rare photographs have also been recovered which show the cultural heritage of those times. The old books/records were in a very fragile state and need to be preserved. The annual administration reports recovered are from 1861-1956. These reports are the basis on which the department worked in those days and are only available here in single copies. It may be mentioned that the Sate Forest Research Institute Library was carved out of the oldest library of the Forest Department formerly known as Central Forest Library of Central Provinces and Berar. The Institute takes pride in possessing the oldest Forest Working Plans of three states. It had working plans of other states also. Copies of ‘Indian Forester’, one of the oldest forestry Journal in the world and started in 1875 are maintained from that period. Many other rare and old books have also been found in the record room needing proper maintenance.
After listing, cataloguing and classification these documents were repaired, laminated and bound. A Forest Archive is housed in the second floor of the Institute. These records were recovered by Dr. Pratibha Bhatnagar, Scientist of the Institute who has maintained and created a Forest Archive in the Institute.
Dr. Pratibha Bhatnagar
Social Economics, Marketing and Utilization Division
State Forest Research Institute
Polipathar, Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh - 482008