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Expanding the space for future resource management: Explorations of the timber frontier in Northern Europe and the rescaling of sustainability during the nineteenth century.


Analysing international forestry congresses and (by way of example) the exploration of Northern Norway and Finland in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the article examines the changing conditions of natural resource management in the Baltic and North Sea regions. From the mid-nineteenth century onward, the overall increasing consumption of wood and the advancing timber frontier in Northern Europe questioned the Western European perception of Northern Europe as possessing inexhaustible woodlands. At the same time, the expanding railway network in Central Europe overran traditional (local) concepts of sustainable forest management. Since 1873, at international congresses, experts have debated the consequences of these spatial changes for the future prospects of forestry. On the one hand, pessimistic voices warned about a coming worldwide shortage of timber. On the other hand, optimistic statements saw the railway as a solution, as it allowed for timber to be transported wherever rails were laid. In the countries of the Baltic and North Sea regions, state authorities, as well as forestry academies, took up the debate and tried to improve their knowledge of accessible forest resources, for instance by sending expeditions to the woodlands of Northern Europe. The expanding railway network as well as the accumulation and cross border circulation of new knowledge about forest resources led to an ongoing process of rescaling sustainability: forestry experts continuously tried to keep in step with the changing spatial conditions of forestry planning (timber frontier, railway network) and at the same time fostered these changes. Experts suggested and advocated either spatial limits--for instance laws for regional forest protection--or further spatial extensions--such as new railway lines or channels--in order to shape the spatial framework of future forest management.


Forests, sustainability, timber frontier, international congresses


On 10 July 1906, at about seven o'clock in the morning, the Prussian Oberforster Dr. Carl Metzger and his colleague Forstassessor Schulze-Berge were woken up at the top of Sokosti Mountain in Northern Finland, by a herd of reindeer which slowly approached the foresters with lowered antlers. Sokosti Mountain was a stopover on Metzger's forestry expedition through Northern Europe. (1) Despite the unusual wake-up call, the mountain served as viewpoint to overlook the surrounding area and to decide upon the following routes to be taken. Metzger and Schulze-Berge were driven by scientific curiosity about Northern Europe's woodlands and by the need to quantify to what extent these woodlands would provide timber for an increasing industrialised demand in Western and Central Europe. This question had been bothering international forestry cooperation since the mid-1880s. The different ways in which forestry experts tried to tackle this question provide insight into the fundamental changes of concepts of forest management during the nineteenth century and--in general --into changing concepts of sustainability.

Research on the history of forest management in Europe during the nineteenth century and on concepts of sustainability comprises a broad variety of thematic issues and approaches. Within this broad scope, one of the major areas of study covers the establishment of scientific forestry and the attempts of mainly German and French foresters during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries to provide an 'exact', mathematical basis for calculating a continuous--i.e., sustainable--use of forests. There is an ongoing controversy as to whether these measurements were an answer to impending shortage of timber and helped to maintain the supply of forest products, or led to timber shortage for local people by excluding traditional uses from the forests and prioritising the production of marketable timber for export. (2) Moreover, studies on several European countries provide insight into the complex processes of adaptation of these concepts of forest management into the specific context of the respective countries. (3)

Interestingly enough, there is not such intensive research or controversy about nineteenth century forestry management, although this time period saw an overall increasing consumption of timber due to industrialisation and population growth. However, there are several studies that touch upon the challenges to forestry in the period of industrialisation, and these are useful to open up new perspectives.

Bernd Stefan Grewe demonstrated in an article in 2003 that it was not the sustainable managed German forest that served the growing demand for timber due to industrialisation in Germany. Instead, from the 1860s onward, increasing imports of timber to Germany provided the rising quantities of timber, needed in particular for mining (pit props), railways (sleepers, wagons) and manifold construction purposes. In other words, German woodlands could be maintained in a sustainable manner, because the increasing demand for timber was served by foreign woodlands, and Grewe pointed at the examples of deforestation 'in Africa and Asia, South and Central America'. (4) Indeed, European colonial powers, such as Great Britain, France and Germany all had their colonial forestry programmes in order to effectively exploit forest resources in their overseas regions. (5) However, nineteenth century statistics show that the growing demand for timber in Western and Central European countries was not served by Africa, Asia and America, but mainly by Northern and Eastern European woodlands. In the second half of the nineteenth century, even Great Britain, which governed a global empire, imported only ten to 25 per cent of its timber from overseas, mainly from Canada, while the majority of timber for the British economy came from Northern Europe. (6) This guides the attention of research to Scandinavia and Northern Russia.

Economic history has gathered statistical-based evidence of a lively timber trade since early modern times, in particular from Northern and Central Europe to Great Britain and the Netherlands. (7) In 1984, Jorgen Bjorklund examined data on Swedish timber exports and came up with the thesis of a northern European timber frontier: (8) during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, woodcutters and sawmills in Scandinavia forced their way North and Northeast, exploited forests and transformed rivers for floating, in order to meet the rising demand for timber. (9) For Scandinavia, Bjorklund's argument was taken up by several other environmental historians, including Timo Myllyntaus et al., Ismo Bjorn, Lars Ostlund and Marit H. Lie et al., who examined regional examples and demonstrated the interrelation between different forms of forest use, as well as the manifold ecological and economic effects of the timber frontier. (10) There are hints as to timber frontiers and similar situations in the regions of East Central Europe. Jozef Broda studied forest policy in the Partitions of Poland and pointed out the tendency of the increasing sale of state-owned woodland to private entrepreneurs in Galicia during the nineteenth century, resulting in a growing number of clear-cut areas. (11) This increasing sale for clear cutting reads like a further chapter of the timber frontier. At the same time, Torbjorn Josefsson et al. examined the environmental conditions in industrially 'untouched' woodlands; studying an example area in Northern Sweden, they stressed that even these woodlands should not be considered as having been 'truly pristine' in the time before the timber frontier arrived. Instead, their case study shows that even low-intensity use by the Sami population changed the 'forest structure', particularly around and within settlements. (12) However, the impact of such low-intensity use was by no means as severe and violent as the effects of the timber frontier, driven by an increasing demand for timber to be used in industrialised production. The manifold experiences of a timber frontier in Northern and East Central Europe raises questions concerning the extent to which contemporary forestry experts had been aware of such a frontier during the nineteenth century and how it influenced their concepts of forest management.

Although the above-mentioned authors point to the challenges of industrialisation for European woodlands, they tackle cross-border entanglements and their effects on concepts of forest management only in passing. Therefore, this article seeks to examine, (1) how spatial patterns of forest resource management changed during the nineteenth century; and (2) what kind of entanglements occurred among economic, ecological and technological changes on the one hand, and the cross-border circulation of knowledge about the exploration and management of future forest resources on the other hand.

The article proceeds in three steps: first, it briefly outlines concepts of forest management during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries in order to provide a basis to understand the changes during the second half of the nineteenth century. Second, the article examines cross-border controversies among forestry experts at international forestry congresses about the challenges to forest management during the 1880s and 1890s. Third, it analyses the expedition of the German forestry expert Carl Metzger in 1906 to Northern Norway and Finland as an example in order to provide insight into the process of rescaling concepts of sustainable forest management at the turn of the century.

The article uses published and unpublished materials that derive from international forestry congresses and from cross-border expeditions. The unpublished sources are stored in archives in Berlin and Oslo, and have not previously been explored with these questions in mind. The materials offer different perspectives on forestry issues during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. These differences allow for methodological reflection about the potential and limits of the materials. (13) Generally speaking, the published materials mainly derive from international forestry congresses and represent academic discussions and official statements. As experts from many countries participated (mostly European countries, as well as some Non-European countries), these congress materials deliver a broad variety of viewpoints. However, these published materials do not allow for a look at what was happening 'behind the scenes'. Moreover, even forestry experts who participated in these congresses criticised the abstract level of the congress discussions. (14) In contrast, the unpublished materials of Metzger's expedition, as well as the material from other exploratory journeys, offer a perspective of practical scientific field work that includes the hopes and disappointments that were derived from these expeditions. The article will focus on the Baltic and North Sea regions, as these regions were the main area of nineteenth and early twentieth century timber trade in Europe. Beyond that, these regions formed the spatial core of the controversy at international forestry congresses and most of the participants at the congresses hailed from the Baltic and North Sea regions.


As different as the woodland conditions, population density and business activities were in the eighteenth century North Sea and Baltic Sea regions, so too were the concepts and practices of forest resource management. Generally speaking, there were two types of management, depending upon topographical conditions as well as on the political and economic contexts.

On the one hand, in mountainous regions, mainly in Central Europe, people found themselves forced to run their forests sustainably. Although timber export was possible if floatable waterways were available, import of timber uphill was impossible due to the heavy weight of timber. Thus, mountainous regions were characterised by a mono-directional timber traffic. In many mountainous regions with dense population, sustainable forest management worked as a matter of tradition from the late Middle Ages, because the local population was used to managing woodlands on their own and had installed effective measures to secure continuous supply of forest products. (15)

From mid-eighteenth century onward, sustainable forest management was introduced by political authorities as 'scientific forestry', due to an actual or alleged shortage of timber. The political authority enforced its view regarding the quantities of timber defined for the local population, for business and for export. If the timber was of good quality, its export in particular formed a tremendous source of income. Undoubtedly, in regions with dense populations and active business there was a remarkable drive to use forests effectively and to foster efforts to calculate as precisely as possible a sustainable yield out of the local forests. It was against this background that political authorities in Central Europe supported or initiated the foundation of forestry schools and academies. These schools, mainly in the German states and in France, were appreciated throughout Europe, and the elaborated concepts of sustainable forest management were--in theory--highly respected in many European countries. (16)

On the other hand, a long distance trade had been bringing timber from Scandinavia and the Baltic Sea region to Western Europe since early modern times. Conceiving this long distance timber trade as a form of resource management comprises two perspectives. From the Western European perspective--i.e., in particular the British and Dutch perspective--this kind of resource 'management' was a matter of keeping trade alive, securing sea trade routes and contact with timber merchants abroad or even direct access to foreign woodlands. (17) This kind of resource management did not care about local sustainable forestry, but relied on a blurred perception of Northern and Eastern Europe as inexhaustible woodlands. From a Northern and Eastern European perspective, trade of forest products was one part of forest management, while forest use for inland purposes was another. In the countries of Northern and Eastern Europe, the relation between inland use and the export of forest products depended on a broad variety of economic, ecological, political and social factors. The foremost factors were the size of accessible woodland, the different laws regulating property and usage of woodland and the proportion of state owned and private owned woodland areas. In Norway, for instance, the state owned only a small portion, less than ten per cent of the country's woodland area by the end of the nineteenth century, whereas in the Baltic provinces of the Russian Empire, the state owned about 27 per cent. In other Russian provinces, particularly in the north, this percentage was even higher. (18) In timber export, the differences were large, too. Around 1900, Sweden led the group of exporting countries, selling abroad some 6.7 million cubic metres of timber; export from Norway was about 2 million cubic metres. By contrast, the export of wood pulp from Norway numbered 392,000 tons; at that time, exports of wood pulp from Sweden numbered 'only' 205,000 tons. (19)

In all countries of the North Sea and Baltic Sea regions, timber export provoked debates about the extent of trade and its impact on countries' future resources and wealth. (20) The controversies concerning the installation and competencies of a state forestry administration and forestry laws in Norway, Sweden and in the Russian Empire during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries can be understood as an indicator of the process of balancing between unlimited trade and sustainable management in order to secure inland consumption, as well as the export of timber.

Depending upon the regional context, the two types of forest resource management--sustainable forestry and long distance timber trade--coexisted or even merged in different ways: the Norwegian attempts to install a state forestry administration while keeping an enormous timber export alive, (21) the British initiatives to secure a local British timber supply for the Royal Navy (22) and many other cases in the North Sea and Baltic Sea region provide manifold examples. Regardless of the special features of all these examples, it is important here to stress two main characteristics of eighteenth century forest management: the Western European perception of Northern and Eastern Europe as areas of inexhaustible forest resources and the topographical necessity in mountainous regions to run local forests sustainably, as these regions had no chance to import timber.


During the nineteenth century, the conditions of the timber trade and of forest management in Europe changed fundamentally. The following part of this article will analyse this change by examining material from international forestry congresses and cross-border forest explorations. From the 1850s, forestry had been an issue at international events, such as the World Exhibitions or international statistical congresses. (23) The first international forestry congress took place in Vienna in 1873, followed by a large number of further congresses until 1914. These congresses were of very different origins. In most cases, state authorities such as the ministries for agriculture and sylviculture organised congresses. However, some learned societies and private initiatives also played an active part, such as the Royal Scottish Arboricultural Society organising the International Forestry Exhibition in 1884 in Edinburgh and the Touring Club de France running an International Forestry Congress in 1913 in Paris. Most of the congresses tackled both forestry and agricultural issues. The congresses were attended by some 300 to about 1,000 participants; the speakers at sessions were mainly forestry scientists from universities and forestry schools, or (forestry trained) state officials. While the overall question concerning the future prospects of forestry was not debated at the first congresses, this issue came to the fore in full force during the 1880s and 1890s, mainly because of the rapidly increasing timber consumption. (24)

From a bird's eye view, there were two perspectives upon the future prospects of forestry that participants of international congresses debated. The two perspectives can be characterised as pessimistic and optimistic. An analysis of the different lines of reasoning provides insight into how concepts of forest management changed during the nineteenth century.

The pessimistic voices pointed mainly at the steadily increasing timber consumption. At the International Forestry Exhibition in Edinburgh in 1884, for instance, the Danish geographer and economist Peter Lund Simmonds, painted a dark picture of future forestry:
consumption of timber is out of all proportion to the natural upgrowth
or even cultural renewal, of indigenous forests, and this disproportion
of want to local supply will become greater and greater in the course
of time, when denser settlements will be formed in those countries from
whence our subsidiary or main timber supplies are now obtained. We are
living on a capital which is vanishing rapidly, and we certainly look
with inquietude upon the prospects of the future. (25)

At first sight, Simmonds' sorrows looked like the very long story of warnings about timber shortage, warnings that had been well-known in Britain as well as in continental Europe since the early modern period. (26) However, from the British perspective, there was something new in Simmonds' argument: Simmonds saw the timber supply for Britain no longer as a question of political strategy, including naval force if necessary, to secure timber import from Northern Europe; instead, he perceived it as a question of how long, taking into account all the given woodland areas of Europe, an exponentially increasing demand for timber could be served. In other words, Simmonds questioned the blurred perception of inexhaustible woodlands in Northern Europe.

There is a broad range of statistical data providing insight into the timber trade, the consumption of forest products and the development of woodland areas. In the late nineteenth century, the available data must have been frightening indeed. The import of timber to Great Britain, for instance, rose exponentially from 3.4 million tons in 1864 to roughly 10 million tons in 1899. (27) In a similar way, timber export from Sweden, for instance, rose from 1.6 million cubic metres in 1864 to 6.7 million cubic metres in 1900. (28) At the same time, in Scandinavia, internal consumption of timber also grew, and this internal consumption aggregated to an even higher amount than export. (29) Since the 1990s, historical studies on woodland areas in Northern Europe have shown a decrease in the amount of wooded land in Northern Europe until the end of the nineteenth century. (30) Only later, from about the mid-twentieth century, have wooded areas been expanding again.

The statistics generated at the end of the nineteenth century that showed an exponential increase in internal consumption and timber export provided continuous fuel for the pessimistic argument. This pessimistic argument was depicted in international as well as in national contexts, and reached a famous peak at the International Forestry Congress in Paris in 1900. Here, Alphonse Melard, Inspector of Forests in France, warned about a coming global shortage of timber. (31)

By contrast, the optimistic participants at international congresses pointed to the technological innovations that would overcome any obstacles to future supply of forest products. Adolf von Guttenberg, for instance, Professor at Vienna's Universitat fur Bodenkultur, saw railways as the key to future timber supply: 'Today, wood is a highly demanded and used product', Guttenberg argued at the International Forestry Congress in Vienna in 1890,
but it is not an indispensable product. On waterways and railways, wood
is transported over large distances, even in minor qualities as fire
wood or charcoal. Measured in quantities, wood is one of the major
goods on our railways. Today, a balancing of shortage and abundance of
wood is possible between distant places, even between one continent and
another. (32)

Guttenberg went into raptures about the fact that the railway had brought an end to the mono-directional timber trade bound inextricably to floatable rivers and enabled timber transport in every direction (multi-directional timber traffic). Moreover, he explicitly questioned the timeliness of the traditional concept of sustainability: 'Is it possible at all', Guttenberg asked, 'to maintain the claim of sustainability of forest uses when we take into account today's economic conditions?' Guttenberg's argument illustrates the strong entanglement between technological and economic changes--i.e., the expanding railway transport systems on the one hand and the changes of forest management concepts on the other. In Guttenberg's opinion, the expanding railway network was the main factor that led him to advocating the abandoning of traditional (local scale) sustainable forest management concepts.

These entanglements were not only an issue for debate at international forestry congresses, but had manifold and severe effects on practical forestry in the Baltic and North Sea regions. These effects can be illustrated by two contrasting examples: in Russia, for instance, forestry experts complained that planned railway lines increased prices for wooded land and timber along the prospected line, (33) because the new railway line made woodlands accessible that had not previously been linked to timber markets in Western and Central Europe. By contrast, the economic impact of railways on forests in Germany was different: with the extension of the railway network, businesses such as the paper pulp industries in Saxony were able to import cheap timber from Russia or Austria-Hungary. (34) As a result, owners of large wooded estates in Germany complained that these businesses were using imported timber instead of German timber as it was more expensive. (35) These different effects of the expanding railway network fuelled the debate between optimists and pessimists. In the long run, this debate did not see a winner. This ongoing controversy reflects one of the central challenges to forestry in the North Sea and Baltic Sea regions, as it illustrates the attempts by forestry experts to rescale traditional concepts of forest management to the new conditions. The steadily increasing consumption of timber raised the question as to what extent Europe's woodland area would be able to meet the demand; accelerating industrialised production challenged the rhythm of forestry planning as this rhythm was necessarily slow due to the long-term growth of trees; and the expanding railway network constantly added new accessible areas to possible future forestry calculations.

Pessimists continued to warn about a coming shortage of timber; they went on to collect available forestry data from European countries and urged the arrangement of international forestry statistics. The international forestry congresses worked as turntables for the circulation of forestry knowledge that, on the one hand, improved the empirical basis on which to form a clearer view of forestry in Europe. On the other hand, the empirical material from different countries revealed clearly how irregular the data were. For there were some regions that were covered only by rough sketches regarding their forestry conditions, in particular in Northern Scandinavia and Northern Russia.

Although pessimists continuously urged for an international forestry statistic, the international forestry congresses did not succeed in agreeing on this issue until World War I. The reasons for that are manifold: the participants had too many differing expectations of forestry statistics; some participants even questioned the necessity and feasibility of forestry statistics at all. (36) Moreover, opinions about possible standardisations were different. Obviously, the debate about an international forestry statistic went in the same direction as the controversies at the international statistical congresses about other issues during the 1870s: that is, it failed due to an ongoing divergence of opinion. (37)


Even if international congresses before World War I did not succeed in agreeing on an international forestry statistic, the question remained: how long would European woodland areas be able to supply timber for accelerating industrial growth? It was against this background of ongoing international debate and an increasing cross-border circulation of forestry knowledge that experts in their national contexts took up the issue.

The reactions in national contexts were manifold: in the Baltic and North Sea regions, the ongoing debate influenced national scientific agendas, as well as national forestry policies. Many governments reinforced their engagement in national forestry statistics in order to improve their knowledge concerning the country's own forestry potentials. Beyond this, governments, as well as private regional initiatives, took up afforestation projects. Even in Great Britain, where afforestation was deemed a profitless endeavour, some regional initiatives gained impressive results, such as a Great Glen (Glen More) afforestation project, which began in 1911. (38) At the same time, countries in Northern and Eastern Europe enforced forestry laws regulating the export of forestry products. The Norwegian Government, for instance, forbade by law in 1892 the export of timber from Northern Norway. The law aimed at maintaining timber supply for local settlements and local business, and therefore the law blocked foreign business from clear-cutting regional forests. (39) Finally, the governments of many countries, in particular the British and the German governments, improved consular services abroad in order to obtain reliable information on timber trade and forest resources. (40) In Germany, for instance, the Prussian Oberforster Dr Carl Metzger was one of the driving forces behind enquiries into Northern European forestry. Born in 1865, Metzger studied forestry at the Prussian forestry academies in Eberswalde and Hannoversch Munden; in addition, he studied economics at Marburg and Gieben, where he received his doctoral degree after completing a thesis on the economic aspects of forestry. (41)

Working as lecturer at the forestry academy in Hannoversch Munden from 1891, he intensified his research on Northern Europe. Part of his work resulted in a memorandum which he delivered to the German Foreign Office (Auswartiges Amt) on 29 March 1896. (42) In the memorandum, Metzger outlined the increasing German demand for timber. As Germany depended upon foreign imports, Metzger argued, it would be necessary to improve knowledge about the supplying countries in order to secure future supply. Metzger referred to the agricultural experts who had already been sent abroad by the German Foreign Office in order to deliver reliable information about agricultural issues and food supply from abroad. Consequently, Metzger urged for the dispatch of forestry experts to those regions holding the major quantities of timber, i.e., Northern Europe and Northern America. Metzger's request received remarkable backing by the Prussian Ministry of Agriculture which, since the 1880s, had been engaged in enquiries regarding the trade balances of home-grown and imported forest products. (43)

In spring 1901, Metzger was successful. The German Reichstag agreed to finance forestry enquiries abroad. The Prussian Ministry of Agriculture suggested to the German Foreign Office that Metzger should be appointed expert in Scandinavia, not least as Metzger was the one who had brought forward the idea of sending forestry experts abroad. On 6 September 1901, Metzger arrived at his first post in Copenhagen. In the following years, Metzger collected forestry data about Scandinavia and later about Russia, too. He visited forestry experts in Northern European countries and undertook expeditions throughout Scandinavia and Northern Russia. He reported the data to Berlin, and published studies in forestry and commercial journals. In particular, Metzger's forestry expedition through Northern Norway and Northern Finland in summer 1906 is not only a vivid example of exploratory forestry travelling at the turn of the century, but also holds a magnifying glass up to the core elements of the process of rescaling sustainability.

Regarding the exploration of Northern European woodlands, Metzger followed a long tradition of forestry enquiries. For the preparation of his 1906 expedition, a wide range of data were available: in Norway, a forestry commission had elaborated a forestry statistic between 1873 and 1878, showing a consumption of wood that exceeded the annual production of the given woodland area by about 116 million cubic feet per year. (44) Finland was covered in the Russian forestry statistic of 1888 by Nestor K. Genko, a study already translated into German by Hermann Guse by 1889. (45) The data given about Finland provided a balanced forestry situation in this part of the Russian Empire, even showing a slight increase of woodland area of about 2.6 per cent compared to the forestry statistic of 1873. (46) However, the tenor of Genko's statistic was pessimistic, as the data for the whole Russian Empire showed an overall decrease in woodland area.

Just as important as statistics were maps; indeed, the Finnish forestry administration kept a series of forestry maps. Metzger used these maps to prepare the route of his expedition. Only later on did he realise that parts of these maps comprised 'nothing more than a few rivers, lakes and hills, depicted in a completely wrong manner'. (47) Beyond the Finnish forestry maps, geographers, botanists and scientists of other disciplines had delivered several maps regarding Northern Europe's vegetation, including Frederik Christian Schubeler's botany map on Norway, (48) and Jens Andreas Friis' map on Finmarken which even included a sketch of the Northern European tree line. (49) Moreover, Metzger was not the first foreigner to come to Northern Europe with interests in forestry. During the second half of the nineteenth century, the most famous of these foreigners were Edmund von Berg and John Croumbie Brown. Berg was director of the Saxonian forestry academy in Tharandt and travelled through Finland on behalf of the Finnish forestry administration in 1858 in order to deliver suggestions on how to improve forestry administration. (50) John Croumbie Brown was a Scottish botanist with a broad range of experiences in environmental issues in British colonies who published several books about the forestry conditions of different European and overseas regions, mainly to raise interest in forestry in Great Britain and to support the establishment of a forestry school there. (51)

It is not an easy task to sort out how many sources Metzger knew of prior to preparing his expedition. However, it can be assumed that he was familiar with the Norwegian forestry commission's report of 1878, and with Genko's statistic on Russia of 1888 (i.e., the German translation of 1889) that included Finland.

In 1905, after four years of service in Copenhagen, the German Foreign Office moved Metzger to Helsinki in order to explore Northern Finland's woodlands. On 5 February 1906, he presented his plans to the German Foreign Office in which he outlined an expedition of about three months to examine those woodland areas 'that are about to be opened up at present' ('die jetzt im Begriff sind, aufgeschlossen zu werden'). (52)

The German Foreign Office agreed. On 31 May 1906, Metzger and Forstassessor Schulze-Berge set out for Northern Norway and Northern Finland. First, they went by steamship from Helsinki to Stockholm, then by train to Trondheim, and again by steamship to Troms[empty set], as this was the quickest route to get north. In Tromso, they met Arthur Klerck, the state forester (skogforvalter) for Northern Norway. He took them through Finnmark, examining forests, among others, on the shores of Altafjord and Varangerfjord. Reaching the Norwegian--Russian border at the Pasvig River, Metzger and Schulze-Berge now headed south, exploring and evaluating Northern Finland's forests. From Pasvig River they went to Inari Lake, passing its western shore, to Ivalo, then along Lutto River to Saariselka. On 9 July 1906, they climbed a mountain that Metzger quoted as 'Uelmapaa', about 720 metres high, which was most probably Sokosti Mountain (718 metres), where they had their surprising morning encounter with the herd of reindeer. Now, they headed for Kemi River, the largest river system in Northern Finland running into the Baltic Sea. Coming from the north, having hiked through wide and mostly uninhabited woodland areas, here, at the upper course of Kemi River, Metzger and Schulze-Berge met a group of about 200 raftsmen. In other words, they had reached the Northern European timber frontier.

From the upper course of Kemi River, they went down (probably partly by boat or raft) to the confluence of Luiro River. Having explored woodlands at the shore of Kemijarvi Lake, they turned eastward: crossing the Maanselka watershed, they entered the drainage system of the White Sea, explored woodlands at Oulanka River and Paanajarvi Lake, again meeting groups of raftsmen. From Paanajarvi Lake they turned westward again and reached Kuusamo on 2 August 1906. Further on, they examined sawmills in Oulo at the Gulf of Bothnia. The last stage of their expedition brought Metzger and Schulze-Berge from Oulo via the shore of Oulujarvi Lake to Kajaani, whence they took the train, reaching Helsinki on 20 August 1906.

Metzger wrote a report of more than sixty pages about their expedition that is full of details and reflects the state of the art in forest exploration and evaluation at the turn of the century. Metzger and Schulze-Berge did not spare effort to reach reliable results: they surveyed small areas of woodland as examples, measured trees and tried to extrapolate their results to areas they were able to overlook from mountain peaks. They even cut trees as examples to determine the precise age and speed of growth of trees in the respective areas. (53)

The report gives insight into two aspects that characterise the process of rescaling sustainability since the second half of the nineteenth century. First, the attempts to adjust and evaluate the relation between local use of woodlands and the export of forest products. Second, the examination of ways to access 'untouched' woodland areas for timber export for industrial (Western) purposes.

Regarding the relation between local use and export, Metzger described the forests in Northern Norway as relatively small but capable of supplying local demands that were necessary to maintain regional settlements and business. Therefore, Metzger accorded respect to the Norwegian efforts to run these forests sustainably and, since 1892, to forbid by law wood cutting for export.

By contrast, Metzger disregarded local Sami use of forests. For Metzger, it was just misuse of forests to see the local Sami population putting reindeer to graze in woodlands as well as moving herds through woodlands to places of reindeer trade at the coast: 'Where such a herd is allowed to browse, not much is left over from existing young trees (vorhandenen Verjungungen)'. (54) Here, Metzger repeated an argument that developed with the establishment of forestry as a science in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. According to that, livestock pastures and other local forms of traditional forest utilisation were disqualified as 'additional uses' ('Nebennutzungen') or even as misuse of forests, because scientific forestry focused on maximising timber production. It was mainly for cultural reasons that Metzger disregarded Sami as well as North Finnish local forest uses, because, in Metzger's eyes, these locals were a sort of 'half-wild population' ('halbwilde Bevolkerung'). (55) As these people in Northern Finland were not included in the family of people using their forests according to 'scientific' standards, the woodland area in Northern Finland was, for Metzger, at free disposal. Consequently, Metzger spent pages of his report discussing how to utilise these woodlands for the global timber trade ('Weltholzhandel').

This leads to the second aspect, the examination of ways to access 'untouched' woodland areas for timber export for industrial (Western) purposes. In his report, Metzger clearly referred to the ongoing debate about the capability of Northern European woodlands to supply timber for Western and Central Europe. A core aim of his expedition was to clarify the blurred perception of Northern Europe's forests. Metzger had carefully planned the route of his expedition, allowing him to explore the Western drainage system of rivers running into the Baltic Sea, as well as parts of the Eastern drainage system of rivers that lead to the White Sea. Analysing forests along Kemi River, Metzger came to the conclusion that 'in the foreseeable future, this enormous woodland area, linked with the Baltic Sea, will not run out, even if the present cuttings were redoubled'. ('dass eine Erschopfung dieses gewaltigen mit der Ostsee verbundenen lapplandischen Waldgebietes selbst bei einer Verdoppelung der bisherigen Abholzungen in absehbarer Zeit nicht eintreten wird'). He went even further, arguing that the area would be an 'inexhaustible source' ('unerschopfliche Quelle') for a sizeable industry at the Gulf of Bothnia if these forests were run using silvicultural measures ('waldbauliche Mabnahmen').

Regarding the area east of the Maanselka watershed, Metzger and Schulze-Berge explored forests at Oulanka River and Paanajarvi Lake. In his report, Metzger was impressed to see this area so well wooded. He estimated the area to have a great importance for the timber economy of the future. Moreover, he referred to current considerations in Finland about the construction of a channel linking the White Sea and the Baltic Sea, which, as Metzger assumed, would result in a good deal for the Finnish side.

Different perspectives merged in Metzger's report: on the one hand, he advocated Finnish economic efficiency by estimating advantages for Finnish timber business that would result from increasing economic exploitation of 'untouched' woodland areas. On the other hand, he elaborated a kind of colonial perspective that sought to examine the best ways of exploiting foreign countries' natural resources. From today's point of view, Metzger's expedition and the knowledge he gathered can be understood as a step toward a global perspective on forest resources. In this context, Metzger was only one expert within a broad spectrum of experts with manifold scientific, economic and political intentions. Experts at the early international forestry congresses, starting in the 1870s, were mainly driven by scientific intentions to gain a more detailed picture of global forest resources. Later, during the age of the World Wars, political and strategic interests overlapped with scientific endeavours. In Germany, for instance, the concept of 'Weltforstwirtschaft' (World Forestry Economy), advocated from the late 1920s by Franz Heske, sought to systematise knowledge on forestry on a global scale. During World Wars I and II, scientific and strategic interests merged when German forces unhesitatingly exploited forest resources in the occupied territories in the East in order to meet the German war economy's demands. (56) However, it would be a misunderstanding to draw a direct line from Metzger's expedition of 1906 to the German occupation policies in the early 1940s. Of course, Metzger saw the woodlands of Northern Europe as a source for meeting the demand of the industrialised countries in Western and Central Europe; however, he did not advocate unhesitating exploitation.

Metzger's expedition and his report were intended to improve forestry knowledge about Northern Europe. Within the German forestry community, as well as at international forestry congresses, Northern Europe was a region of endless consideration and rumour regarding its woodlands. In March 1907, he delivered his report to the German Foreign Office. The report was supposed to be published. Usually, reports by Metzger and other forestry or agricultural experts appeared either as an article in the journal Nachrichten fur Handel und Industrie or as a volume in the German Foreign Office's series. However, the report was never published, due to a number of coincidences: the Prussian Ministry of Agriculture was grateful for Metzger's efforts and held the report in high esteem, but the Ministry could not agree on publishing. (57) It would be necessary for diplomatic reasons, the Ministry argued, to leave out those passages criticising Finnish forestry issues. However, the Ministry went on, without these passages, the report would be hard to understand. Therefore, the Ministry suggested the report to be circulated among the heads of the forestry academies in Germany for their attention only. Metzger himself had bigger plans. After another expedition to Northern Russia, Metzger followed up the growing quantity of material in order to write a book. Having written a first draft by August 1908, the Prussian Ministry of Agriculture again appreciated his business, but did not want to give financial support for publishing. Meanwhile, Metzger was occupied with so many other issues that he himself never got back to the publishing plans. (58)

Thus, the results of Metzger's expedition, in particular his estimation of the rich Finnish woodlands, found its way to the scientific forestry community only indirectly. Experts at forestry academies in Germany who had been the privileged readers of Metzger's report probably took his expedition's results as a kind of reassurance. Beyond this purpose, Metzger's report was clearly not used to fuel political debates in, for instance, Germany about timber tariffs. In German timber tariff debates, national statistics on trade and inland consumption seemed to have played a bigger role than reports about forestry expeditions to Northern Europe. (59)

Here, it is not necessary to speculate how Metzger's report, if published, might have influenced the debate at international forestry congresses about the future prospects of forest management in Europe. Published or unpublished, Metzger's report can be read as a document of the ongoing process of rescaling sustainability, a process in which forestry experts continuously attempted to keep in step with the changing spatial conditions of forestry and the timber trade, and tried to rescale their calculations for future forestry to meet these changing conditions.


During the nineteenth century, the spatial framework of natural resource management in Europe underwent a fundamental transformation. This article has analysed how concepts of forest management changed in the North Sea and Baltic Sea region, and what kind of forces drove these changes. Based on sources from international forestry congresses and from cross-border forestry expeditions, the article proceeded in three steps:

First, it gave a short overview of the main aspects characterising forest management during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries in the North Sea and Baltic Sea regions. In general, two different, but coexisting, approaches to forest management can be found: on the one hand were local concepts of sustainable forest management that were applied mainly in mountainous regions. These regions had to rely on their own timber supply, as the topography did not allow for the import of timber. On the other hand there was a long distance timber trade, mainly from Northern and Eastern Europe to Great Britain and the Netherlands, relying on a blurred perception of seemingly 'endless' woodlands in Northern Europe that were supposed to provide a never ending supply of timber.

Second, the analysis of international forestry congresses showed a controversy starting in the mid-1880s: pessimists questioned the ability of European woodlands to meet the ever-increasing demand for timber. By contrast, optimists pointed at the railways that would enable balancing the supply between regions of shortage and regions of abundance. Experts intensified enquiries, including cross-border forestry expeditions, in order to improve knowledge about the capacity of European woodlands.

Third, taking the example of German forestry expert Carl Metzger's expedition to Northern Norway and Finland in 1906, the article examines his method of acquiring new forestry knowledge in order to improve the basis of international debates about the future prospects of forestry.

The debates at international congresses as well as the exploration of Northern European woodlands provide insight into a fundamental change: both the local preconditions of sustainable forest management in mountainous regions and the blurred perception of 'endless' woodlands in Northern Europe, were disturbed by the coincidence of three driving forces:

1) The increasing consumption of timber due to industrialisation and population growth, as well as the advancing timber frontier led to the question of how long available woodlands would provide enough timber.

2) The extending railway network overcame the (mono-directional) timber traffic based on floating. The railway allowed for the import of timber even to mountainous regions (multi-directional traffic) and questioned the necessity for local sustainable forest management.

3) International forestry congresses and cross-border forestry expeditions accelerated the circulation of forestry data and knowledge about accessible woodland areas, as well as stimulated further enquiries regarding 'untouched' regions.

These three forces led to an ongoing process of rescaling sustainability. Forestry experts continuously tried to keep in step with the changing spatial framework of forestry planning (advancing timber frontier and expanding railway networks) and at the same time fostered these changes. Experts suggested and advocated either spatial limits--for instance laws for regional forest protection--or further spatial extensions--such as new railway lines or channels --in order to shape the spatial framework of future forest management.

From a broader perspective, this ongoing process of rescaling sustainability may offer new perspectives on the history of 'managing' resources in the age of globalisation. From this perspective, many aspects of colonisation and de-colonisation during the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries can be read as struggles over the spatial limits or spatial extensions of resource exploitation and its ecological consequences, not only for forest resources but for many other raw materials, too. Moreover, Metzger's expedition in 1906 and his report open up the question of how scientific, economic and political interests came together in the manifold endeavours to map resources during the twentieth century: regarding forestry, the focus is placed mostly on efforts to establish an international forestry statistic as well as on the World Forestry Atlas (Weltforstatlas), produced by Franz Heske, Claus Wiebecke and Richard Torunsky, from 1951 onward in Western Germany. (60) Beyond forestry, since the 1920s, several atlas projects began depicting the world's raw materials, agricultural and industrial production, as well as world trade, such as T. Swinborne Sheldrake's The Chambers of Commerce Atlas of 1925 or Ernst Friedrich's Minerva Atlas of 1926. (61) Seen from a wider perspective, these mapping endeavours can be understood as efforts to adjust the scale of resource exploration and exploitation.


The Leibniz Institute for European History (Mainz/Germany), the Fritz Thyssen Foundation (Koln/ Germany) and the Herder Institute for Historical Research on East Central Europe--Institute of the Leibniz Association (Marburg/Germany) supported research for this article.

Herder Institute for Historical Research on East Central Europe--Institute of the Leibniz Association Gisonenweg 5-7 D-35037 Marburg


(1.) Bundesarchiv (BArch) Berlin, 901/ 14480, Carl Metzger: Bericht uber eine durch Finmarken und finnlandisch Lappland ausgefuhrte Reise, undated [March 1907].

(2.) See Joachim Radkau, 'Zur angeblichen Energiekrise im 18. Jahrhundert. Revisionistische Betrachtungen uber die Holznot', Vierteljahrschrift fur Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgeschichte 73 (1986): 1-37; Henry E. Lowood, 'The Calculating Forester. Quantification, Cameral Science, and the Emergence of Scientific Forestry Management in Germany', in Tore Frangsmyr, J.L. Heilbron and Robin E. Rider (eds), The Quantifying Spirit in the 18th Century (Berkeley 1990), pp. 315-342; Karl Hasel, 'Zur Geschichte der Waldverwustung in Deutschland und ihrer Uberwindung durch die Forstwirtschaft', Zeitschrift fur Wirtschaftsgeographie 37 (1993): 117-125; Per Eliasson and Sven G. Nilsson, '"You Should Hate Young Oaks and Young Noblemen". The Environmental History of Oaks in Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Sweden', Environmental History 7 (2002): 659-677; Richard Holzl, 'Historicizing Sustainability. German Scientific Forestry in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries', Science as Culture 24 (2010): 431-460.

(3.) See, for example, Mark L. Anderson and Charles J. Taylor, A History of Scottish Forestry, Vol. 2 (Edinburgh 1967), p. 349; Torgeir Fryjordet, Skogadministrasjonen i Norge gjennom tidene, Vol. 2, (Oslo 1962), p. 105; Georgij I. Red'ko and Nina G. Red'ko, Istoria lesnogo hozajstva Rossii, (Saint Petersburg 2002), pp. 208-209; Antoni Zabko-Potopowicz, 'Wplyw zachodnioeuropejskiego pismiennictwa i idei ekonomicznych na rozwoj wczesnokapitalistycznego gospodarstwa lesnego w Krolestwie Polskim', Studia z Dziejow Gospodarstwa Wiejskiego 8 (1966): 311-320.

(4.) Bernd-Stefan Grewe, 'Das Ende der Nachhaltigkeit? Wald und Industrialisierung im 19. Jahrhundert', Archiv fur Sozialgeschichte 43 (2003): 61-79.

(5.) Richard Grove, Green Imperialism. Colonial Expansion, Tropical Island Edens and the Origins of Environmentalism 1600-1860, (Cambridge 1995); Jan Oosthoek, The Colonial Origins of Scientific Forestry in Britain, online: (25 March 2014); Emma C. Spary, Utopia's Garden. French Natural History from Old regime to Revolution, (Chicago 2000); Michael Flitner (ed.), Der deutsche Tropenwald. Bilder, Mythen, Politik, (Frankfurt am Main/ New York 2000).

(6.) William Schlich, Schlich's Manual of Forestry, Vol. 1, 3rd ed., (London 1906), pp. 173-176.

(7.) Dietrich Ebeling, Der Hollanderholzhandel in den Rheinlanden. Zu den Handelsbeziehungen zwischen den Niederlanden und dem westlichen Deutschland im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert (Stuttgart 1992); Sven-Erik [Angstrom]strom, From Tar to Timber. Studies in Northeast European Forest Exploitation and Foreign Trade 1660-1860 (Helsinki 1988).

(8.) Jorgen Bjorklund, 'From the Gulf of Bothnia to the White Sea. Swedish Direct Investments in the Sawmill Industry of Tsarist Russia', Scandinavian Economic History Review 32 (1984): 17-39; Jorgen Bjorklund, Den nordeuropeiska timmergransen i Sverige och Ryssland (Umea 1998); see also Francis Sejersted, 'Veien mot ost', in Sievert Langholm and Francis Sejersted (eds), Vandringer, (Oslo 1980), pp. 163-204.

(9.) For example: Lars Ostlund and Erik Turnlund, 'Floating Timber in Northern Sweden. The Construction of Floatways and Transformation of Rivers', Environment and History 8 (2002): 85-106.

(10.) Timo Myllyntaus, Minna Hares and Jan Kunnas, 'Sustainability in Danger? Slash-and-Burn Cultivation in Nineteenth-Century Finland and Twentieth-Century Southeast Asia', Environmental History 7 (2002): 267-302, here 274-275; Ismo Bjorn, 'Takeover. The Environmental History of the Coniferous Forest', Scandinavian Journal of History 25 (2000): 281-296, here 285-287; Lars Ostlund, 'Logging the Virgin Forest. Northern Sweden in the Early-Nineteenth Century' Forest and Conservation History 39 (1995): 160-171; Marit H. Lie, Torbjorn Josefsson, Ken Olaf Storaunet and Mikael Ohlson, 'A Refined View on the 'Green Lie'. Forest Structure and Composition Succeeding Early Twentieth Century Selective Logging in South East Norway', Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research 27 (2012): 270-284.

(11.) Jozef Broda, 'Gospodarka lesna (od polowy XIX w. do I Wojny Swiatowej)', in Stanislaw Arnold (ed.), Zarys historii gospodarstwa wiejskiego w Polsce, Vol. 3 (Warsaw 1970), pp. 607-657, here pp. 619-621.

(12.) Torbjorn Josefsson, Bjorn Gunnarson, Lars Liedgren, Ingela Bergman and Lars Ostlund, 'Historical Human Influence on Forest Composition and Structure in Boreal Fennoscandia', Canadian Journal of Forest Research 40 (2010): S. 872-884, here 874 and 881.

(13.) See Mauro Agnoletti and Steven Anderson, Methods and Approaches in Forest History (Wallingford 2000).

(14.) See, for example, Wladyslaw Tyniecki, 'Miedzynarodowy kongres rolniczo-lesniczy we Wiedniu 1890', Sylwan 8 (1890): 399-410, here 406.

(15.) Robert Netting, 'Of Men and Meadows. Strategies of Alpine Land Use', Anthropological Quarterly 45 (1972): 132-144; Elinor Ostrom, Governing the Commons. The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action (Cambridge 1990) refers to Netting and delivers several other examples.

(16.) See, for example, Torgeir Fryjordet, Skogadministrasjonen i Norge gjennom tidene, Vol. 2, (Oslo 1962), pp. 103-108; Edward Wiecko, 'Zarys historii nauk lesnych w Polsce w latach 1795-1939', Studia i Materialy z Dziejow Nauki Polskiej Seria B, 25 (1975): 115-151, here 116-129.

(17.) Sven-Erik [Angstrom]strom, 'English Timber Imports from Northern Europe in the Eighteenth Century', The Scandinavian Economic History Review 18 (1970): 12-32; Robert Greenhalgh Albion, Forests and Sea Power. The Timber Problem of the Royal Navy 1652-1862 (Cambridge, Mass., 1926), pp. 139-199; Arnvid Lillehammer, 'The Scottish-Norwegian Timber Trade in the Stavanger Area in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries', in Thomas Christopher Smout (ed.), Scotland and Europe 1200-1850, (Edinburgh 1986), pp. 97-111.

(18.) See Albert Karsten Myhrvold, 'Europas Skogareal', Tidsskrift for Skovbrug 16 (1908): 4-7, here 4; Nestor Karlovich Genko [on the book cover mistakenly H.K. Henko], Beitrage zur Statistik der Forsten des Europaischen Russlands, aus dem Russischen mit einem Vorwort von Hermann Guse (Berlin and Gieben 1889), p. 33.

(19.) Brian R. Mitchel (ed.), European Historical Statistics 1750-1975, (London/ Basingstoke 1975), p. 348.

(20.) For example: Wilhelm Pfeil, Grundsatze der Forstwirthschaft in Bezug auf die Nationalokonomie, und die Staatsfinanzwissenschaft, (Zullichau and Freistadt 1822/1824), Vol. 1, pp. 137-147; Emil Bierzynski, 'Nieszczenie i ochona lasow w Galicyi', Sylwan 8 (1890): 245-251; T.S., 'Hvorlaenge vare Norges Skove?', Den norske Forstforenings Aarbog 3 (1883): 180-184.

(21.) J.A. Krag 'Historisk Oversigt over europaeiske Landes Skovvaesen, Den norske Forstforenings Aarbog 9 (1889): S. 85-108

(22.) Albion, op. cit.

(23.) For example, Ernst Engel, Der Internationale Statistische Congreb in Berlin. Ein Bericht an die Vorbereitungs-Commission der V. Sitzungsperiode des Congresses uber die Gegenstande der Tagesordnung derselben (Berlin 1863).

(24.) Christian Lotz, 'Nachhaltige Herausforderung. Internationale forstwissenschaftliche Kongresse und die Mabstabe zukunftiger Ressourcennutzung, ca. 1870-1914', in Justyna Turkowska, Alexandra Schweiger and Peter Haslinger (eds), Wissen transnational. Funktionen - Praktiken - Reprasentationen (forthcoming 2015). Beside the large international forestry congresses, experts founded the 'International Union of Forest Research Organizations' (IUFRO) in 1891/92; however, IUFRO did not tackle forestry statistics or future prospects of timber supply.

(25.) Peter Lund Simmonds, 'Past, Present and Future Sources of the Timber Supplies of Great Britain', Journal of the Society of Arts 19 Dec. 1884: 102-121, here 104.

(26.) Oliver Rackham, Trees and Woodland in the British Landscape. The Complete History of Britain's Trees, Woods and Hedgerows, (London 1990), pp. 94-96; Bernd Stefan Grewe, 'Man sollte sehen und weinen! Holznotalarm und Waldzerstorung vor der Industrialisierung', in Frank Uekotter (ed.), Wird Kassandra heiser? Die Geschichte falscher okoalarme (Stuttgart 2004), pp. 24-41.

(27.) William Schlich, 'The Outlook of the World's Timber Supply', Transactions of the Royal Arboricultural Society XVI (1901): 355-387, here 358.

(28.) Brian R. Mitchel (ed.) European Historical Statistics 1750-1975, (London/ Basingstoke 1975), pp. 346 and 348.

(29.) See, for example, Anonymous, 'Skovenes Bedydning', Tidsskrift for Skovbrug 3 (1895): 121-122.

(30.) Timo Myllyntaus and Timo Mattila, 'Decline or Increase? The Standing Timber Stock in Finland, 1800-1997', Ecological Economics 41 (2002): 271-288.

(31.) Alphonse Melard, 'Insuffisance de la production des bois d'oeuvre dans le monde', Revue des eaux et forets 39 (1900): 402-433.

(32.) Adolf von Guttenberg, 'Inwieweit ist bei dem heutigen Stande der Wirthschaft und der durch dieselbe bestimmten Forsteinrichtungs-Praxis die Forderung strengster Nachhaltigkeit der Nutzungen uberhaupt noch aufrecht zu erhalten?', Centralblatt fur das gesammte Forstwesen 16 (1890): 364-373.

(33.) Brian Bonhomme, Forests, Peasants and Revolutionaries. Forest Conservation in Soviet Russia 1917-1925, (New York 2005), p. 40.

(34.) Mathias Mutz, 'Nature's Product? An Environmental History of the German Pulp and Paper Industry', in Bernd Herrmann and Christine Dahlke (eds.), Elements - Continents. Approaches to Determinants of Environmental History and their Reifications (Halle/Saale 2009), pp. 259-264.

(35.) For example: Geheimes Staatsarchiv Preubischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin, I. HA Rep. 87 D, Nr. 3459, 'Die Konkurrenz des auslandischen Holzes', Forstmeister des Fursten zu Ysenburg, Memorandum, April 1881.

(36.) See, for example, Bernhard Danckelmann, 'Das Forstwesen auf der Wiener Weltausstellung im Jahre 1873', Zeitschrift fur Forst- und Jagdwesen 5 (1873): 75-83.

(37.) Nico Randeraad, 'The International Statistical Congress (1853-1876). Knowledge Transfers and their Limits', European History Quarterly 41 (2011): 50-65.

(38.) See for example Lord Lovat, Captain Stirling of Keir, Afforestation in Scotland. Forest Survey of Glen Mor and a Consideration of Certain Problems arising therefrom, Edinburgh 1911 (that is: Transactions of the Royal Scottish Arboricultural Society XXV).

(39.) A critical evaluation of the law of 27 June 1892, forbidding export of timber from Nordland, Troms[empty set] and Finnmarken: Th. M. [possibly Thorvald Mejdell], 'Om vore Skoves hurtige Forringelse og de naermeste F[empty set]lger deraf, samt om de nye Love, sigtende til at standse den videre Nedgang', Tidsskrift for Skovbrug 2 (1894): 97-104, 113-126, 129-134.

(40.) See for example: Reports by Her Majesty's representatives abroad on the cultivation of woods and forests in the countries in which they reside, Commercial. No. 31, Report of George Greville, Stockholm, 1884; Leos Muller and Jari Ojala, 'Consular Services of the Nordic Countries during the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries. Did They Really Work?', in Gordon Boyce and Richard Gorski (eds.), Resources and Infrastructures in the Maritime Economy, 1500-2000 (St. Johns 2001), pp. 23-41; Theo Barker, 'Consular reports. A rich but neglected historical source', Business History 23 (1981): 265-266.

(41.) Carl Metzger, Die Grundlagen, Mittel und Ziele der forstlichen Produktion. Eine Studie uber die okonomische Seite der Forstwirtschaft (Gieben 1891).

(42.) Politisches Archiv des Auswartigen Amtes (PAAA) Berlin/ R 133391, letter from Metzger to von Bulow, 12 May 1901, referring to a memorandum dated 29 March 1896.

(43.) See, for example, the enquiries in Geheimes Staatsarchiv Preubischer Kulturbesitz Berlin, I. HA Rep. 87 D, Nr. 3459, Die Konkurrenz des auslandischen Holzes. Die Bedeutung der Eisenbahntarife fur die inlandische Holzverwertung, Vol. 2, 1879-1883.

(44.) Riksarkiv Oslo, S-1600, Direktoratet for Statens Skoger, Dc, D-Serien, L2287 Skogkommisjonen av 1874, Motiver til Skovkommissionens forel[empty set]bige Udkast til Lov om Forstvaesenet, Arendal, Mai 1879, fol. 8a.

(45.) Nestor Karlovich Genko, K' statistike lesov' Evropejskoj Rossii, (Saint Petersburg 1888); Nestor Karlovich Genko [on the book cover mistakenly H.K. Henko], Beitrage zur Statistik der Forsten des Europaischen Russlands, aus dem Russischen mit einem Vorwort von Hermann Guse, (Berlin and Gieben 1889).

(46.) Genko, op. cit., pp. 48-49.

(47.) BArch Berlin, 901/ 14480, Carl Metzger: Bericht uber eine durch Finmarken und finnlandisch Lappland ausgefuhrte Reise, undated [March 1907].

(48.) Frederik Christian Schubeler, Pflanzengeographische Karte uber das Konigreich Norwegen, (Christiania 1873).

(49.) Jens Andreas Friis, 'Russisch Lappland' (including 'Originalkarte von Russisch Lappland'), Petermanns Geographische Mitteilungen 16 (1870): 358-364.

(50.) Edmund von Berg, 'Die Walder in Finland', Jahrbuch der Koniglich sachsischen Akademie fur Forst- und Landwirthe zu Tharand 13, NF 6 (1859): S. 1-118.

(51.) John Croumbie Brown, The School of Forestry at Evois in Finland, (Edinburgh 1877); John Croumbie Brown, Forestry in Norway, (Edinburgh 1884); Richard Grove gives some details about Brown: Richard Grove, 'Scottish Missionaries, Evangelical Discourses and the Origin of Conservation Thinking in Southern Africa 1820-1900', Journal of Southern African Studies 15 (1989): 163-187.

(52.) PAAA Berlin, R 133403, letter from Metzger to Auswartiges Amt, Helsinki, 5 Feb. 1906.

(53.) BArch Berlin, R 109/ 14480, Carl Metzger: Bericht uber eine durch Finmarken und finnlandisch Lappland ausgefuhrte Reise, undated [March 1907].

(54.) BArch Berlin, R 109/ 14480, Carl Metzger: Bericht uber eine durch Finmarken und finnlandisch Lappland ausgefuhrte Reise, undated [March 1907].

(55.) BArch Berlin, R 109/ 14480, Carl Metzger: Bericht uber eine durch Finmarken und finnlandisch Lappland ausgefuhrte Reise, undated [March 1907].

(56.) Peter-Michael Steinsiek, 'Forstliche Grobraumszenarien bei der Unterwerfung Osteuropas durch Hitlerdeutschland', Vierteljahrschrift fur Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgeschichte 94 (2007): 141-164, here 151-153; David Blackbourn, The Conquest of Nature. Water, Landscape and the Making of Modern Germany, (London 2007), pp. 239-289; Bemmann, Martin: '"...kann von einer schonenden Behandlung keine Rede sein". Zur forst- und landwirtschaftlichen Ausnutzung des Generalgouvernements Warschau durch die deutsche Besatzungsmacht, 1915-1918', Jahrbucher fur Geschichte Osteuropas 55 (2007): 1-33; Gert Groning and Joachim Wolschke-Bulmahn, Die Liebe zur Landschaft, Vol. 3: Der Drang nach Osten. Zur Entwicklung der Landespflege im Nationalsozialismus und wahrend des Zweiten Weltkrieges in den 'eingegliederten Ostgebieten' (Munchen 1987).

(57.) BArch Berlin, R 901/ 14480, Preubisches Landwirtschaftsministerium to Auswartiges Amt, 8 Aug. 1907.

(58.) BArch Berlin, R 901/ 14480, Note of the Auswartiges Amt, 3 Jan. 1910.

(59.) Geheimes Staatsarchiv Preubischer Kulturbesitz Berlin, I. HA Rep. 87 D, Nr. 3459, Die Konkurrenz des auslandischen Holzes. Die Bedeutung der Eisenbahntarife fur die inlandische Holzverwertung, Vol. 2, 1879-1883; Max Endres, Handbuch der Forstpolitik mit besonderer Berucksichtigung der Gesetzgebung und Statistik, (Berlin 1905), pp. 694-706; Jeffrey K. Wilson, The German Forest. Nature, Identity, and the Contestation of a National Symbol 1871-1914, (Toronto 2012), pp. 63-64.

(60.) Franz Heske, Claus Wiebecke and Richard Torunsky (eds), Weltforstatlas/ World Forestry Atlas/ Atlas des forets du monde (Reinbek 1951-1979). Martin Bemmann (Freiburg/Germany) is currently working on a study about international forestry statistics, (working title: Zur Etablierung internationaler Wirtschaftsstatistiken am Beispiel internationaler Holzhandelsstatistiken, 1932-1939).

(61.) George Philip and T. Swinborne Sheldrake (ed.), The Chambers of Commerce Atlas. A Systematic Survey of the World's Trade, Economic Resources and Communications, (London 1925); Ernst Friedrich, Minerva-Atlas. Handatlas fur das deutsche Volk unter besonderer Berucksichtigung von Wirtschaft, Handel und Verkehr, (Leipzig 1926).
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