Synchronize with the table of contents  INTRODUCTION

INTRODUCTION :

PROVENANCE:

American Rivers donated the largest portion of this collection in 1997. Additional material has been added in several small additions since then. The collection remains open.

ACCESS:

The collection is open for research.

OWNERSHIP:

Copyrights have been assigned to the Denver Public Library.

PUBLICATION RIGHTS:

All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from material in the collection should be discussed with the appropriate librarian or archivist. Permission for publication may be given on behalf of the Denver Public Library as the owner of the physical item. It is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained by the customer. The Library does not assume any responsibility for infringement of copyright or publication rights of the manuscript held by the writer, heirs, donors, or executors. Reproduction restrictions are decided on a case-by-case basis.

PREFERRED CITATION:

[Identification of item], American Rivers Collection, CONS147, Conservation Collection, The Denver Public Library.

SIZE:

Number of Boxes: 74

Audio-visual: 1 box

LOCATION:

CONS147

PROCESSED BY:

Robert Russell

April 2002

REVISED AND ENCODED BY:

Claudia Jensen

September 2004

PROJECT MANAGER:

Ellen Zazzarino

HISTORICAL NOTE :

The organization that would become American Rivers was founded in 1973 as the American Rivers Conservation Council (ARCC). The initial meeting of 33 river enthusiasts was held in Denver, Colorado. The stated goal for the organization was to "preserve rivers in their free flowing condition". One specific objective for the organization was to propose rivers for protection under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, which was passed in 1968. Another aim was to monitor the damaging "pork barrel" river projects that were being pursued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Bureau of Reclamation.

American Rivers Conservation Council (ARCC) enjoyed some early success in the years following its founding. The first major success for ARCC was 1974 legislation to protect the Chattooga River in Georgia and South Carolina. The number of rivers protected due to efforts by the ARCC continued to grow throughout the founding years. ARCC's quarterly newsletter American Rivers was first published in the fall of 1973.

The American Rivers Conservation Council officially changed their name to American Rivers in 1986. The mission of the organization remained the same, but the move was made to garner a more easily utilized and recognized title. The group continued to work with local and regional preservation organizations to protect America's waterways.

As of 2001, American Rivers had a membership of about 30,000. They have expanded their program to include not only protection of significant rivers, but dam removal and operation reform, allocation of water resources, and promotion of awareness about the importance of waterways. American Rivers has played a key role in the preservation of 20,000 miles of rivers, and provided the public with invaluable information about the impact these waterways have upon their lives.

The organization has expanded from a single Washington D.C. headquarters to nine regional offices throughout the United States. Their current major project includes a campaign, cosponsored by the History Channel, to restore the Missouri river. The campaign has been timed to coincide with the Lewis and Clark bicentennial.

SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE :

The American Rivers collection contains items from the years of 1968-2000. Included in the collection are correspondence, press releases, newspaper clippings, reports, and meeting minutes from American Rivers and other conservation organizations. Items from the River Trust Alliance, the National Water Alliance, Friends of the River, and the Everglades Coalition are all included in the collection.

The items that make up this collection provide extensive information about American Rivers' attempts to preserve waterways throughout the United States. Court cases such as the California Wild and Scenic Rivers case and litigation regarding the Pine Barrens in New Jersey are part of the collection. Lengthy conservation projects undertaken by American Rivers and other regional preservation groups are also included. Material regarding efforts to preserve the Colorado, Gauley, Missouri, and Yellowstone rivers, or to stop projects such as the Tennessee-Tombigbee waterway, the Big A dam on the Penobscot River, and the proposed Tocks Island and Point Pleasant dams on the Delaware River make up a large portion of the collection.

Reference files containing information on general conservation issues such as acid rain, greenways, urban rivers, and coal slurry are also part of the collection. Also included in the collection are a limited number of items relating to the workings of the American Rivers organization. Preservation plans, mark ups of publications, plans for American Rivers and annual reports fall into this category.

SEPARATED MATERIAL :

Organizations kept American Rivers on their mailing lists before or after they were involved in a cooperative conservation effort. These periodicals, topical reports and publications from other conservation organizations have been transferred to the Western History/Genealogy Department.

SERIES 1 FUNDING 1980-1998 BOX 1-3 :

Correspondence, reports, press releases, and testimony regarding government appropriations for conservation make up this portion of the collection. The National Park Service's State and Local Conservation Assistance Program, the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers funding are among the topics addressed in this series.

SERIES 2 LEGISLATION 1973-1992 BOX 3-7 :

This series consists of correspondence, testimony, press releases, and reports regarding the many pieces of legislation proposed that would impact waterways throughout America.

SERIES 3 MEETINGS, CONFERENCES 1970-1998 BOX 7-10 :

Meeting announcements, agendas, minutes, and correspondence make up this section of the collection. American Rivers is the sponsor or organizer of most of the events chronicled in this series. Foremost among them is the conference celebrating the twentieth Anniversary of the Wild and Scenic Rivers System, the records of which make up the bulk of this series. Correspondence, announcements, minutes, and papers presented at several regional and non-American Rivers events are also included in this portion of the collection.

SERIES 4 ORGANIZATIONAL INFORMATION, PUBLICATIONS 1968-2002 BOX 10-11 :

American Rivers' annual reports, brochures, correspondence, and preservation plans are all part of this series. Reports published by American Rivers on conservation funding, dam removal, and urban rivers are also included in this section. The periodical American Rivers has been removed from the collection for cataloging, and is available through the 5th floor reference desk.

SERIES 5 PUBLICITY 1972-2000 BOX 12-15 :

This series contains items generated by American Rivers in their preservation work. Newspaper clippings and press releases make up a large part of this series, but it also includes information on American Rivers Month events, 1982-1992.

SERIES 6 REFERENCE FILES 1977-1992 BOX 15-19 :

The American Rivers' staff compiled these files to provide background information on the various issues and agencies affecting their efforts. They contain correspondence, press releases, news clippings, and reports. Some topics include the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, greenways, water projects by year, state wild and scenic programs, and other river conservation groups.

SERIES 7 RIVER PRESERVATION EFFORTS 1965-1998 BOX 20-73 :

The main aim of American Rivers is preserving America's waterways through stopping dams and everyday conservation. This mission is reflected in the size of this series. It is by far the largest series in the collection and contains information on a wide variety of conservation efforts by American Rivers. Correspondence, newspaper clippings, press releases, reports, and meeting minutes are all contained in this series. The items arranged by the river, then by the state the river is in. If a river shares a name with a state in which it is found, it is found under that state (Missouri River is with Missouri, Mississippi with Mississippi, etc.)

SERIES 8 RIVER TRIPS, FUND-RAISING 1978-1986 BOX 73-74 :

For many years American Rivers made arrangements with outfitters throughout the United States for river trips in which a portion of the proceeds would go to river conservation efforts. Correspondence, trip reports, promotional materials, and information about the outfitters used on these trips make up this portion of the collection.

SERIES 9 AUDIO-VISUAL MATERIAL AV BOX 1 :

This series contains the video The Missouri: A Journey with Stephen Ambrose, and interviews with American Rivers' President Rebecca Wodder and historian Steven Ambrose.

SUBJECT ACCESS :

: SUBJECT ACCESS - :

  • American Rivers (Organization) -- Archives.
  • Stream conservation -- Societies, etc. -- United States.
  • Rivers -- United States.
  • Water conservation -- United States.
  • Conservation of natural resources -- United States.
  • Dams -- Environmental aspects -- United States.
  • Dam retirement -- United States.

CONTAINER LIST