From Forest to Farm and Back Again
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Teacher's Answer Key
Worksheet 1: Keywords
Worksheet 2: Essay Analysis
1. Create a pie chart, contrasting the amount of cleared land (and pasture) to forest for the years 1675, 1750, and 1850.
1700 - 72% forest 28% cleared
2. How many people /km2 were present in
central Massachusetts in 1700?
3. How many people / km2 were present in central Massachusetts in
4. How many people / km2 were present in central Massachusetts in
Worksheet 3: Historical Record Analysis
What eye witness evidence does this history give about Native
American management of the landscape?
2. What eye witness evidence does this history give about the use of timber for shelter in 1793? "The houses are large and well finished, standing on either side of the street".
3. What eye witness evidence does this history give about the types of trees that were planted by the settlers? The land in this place is exceedingly favorable to the growth of all kinds of fruit trees, being high and warm; and here are large and excellent orchards. What drink were farmers able to provide to both residents and neighboring towns? Much cyder is made here, beyond what the inhabitants consume; but they find a ready market for the surplus in the newer settlements.
4. What eye witness evidence does this history give about the amounts and types of crops grown on the land in 1793? The soil is rich and fertile, and the lands bear all kinds of grain, but most natural to grass and pasturage, and from the appearance and face of the town, we must judge the inhabitants to be industrious and wealthy, who subsist mainly by the cultivation of the earth.
5. What eye witness evidence does this history give about the industries in Petersham in 1793? On each of [the streams] there are both corn and saw mills, and clothiers' works; and by the sides of both there are considerable bodies of good meadow land. Here are works for making pot and pearl ash, where much business is profitably carried on, and many persons employed.
6. Describe the scene in each diorama.
Worksheet 4: Analyzing Historical Maps
1. How many people lived in Petersham in 1765? 700 People
2. If we use the 1765 population density map and the 1771 inventory, we can estimate roughly how many acres of forest must have been cleared to meet the needs of one person in Petersham in the 1768. What is your estimate? 3.5 acres/person3. How many people lived in Petersham in 1831? 1700
4. If the ratio
of people to cleared land was the same in 1831 as it was in
1768, how many acres of forest would have been cleared in
5. The 1771 inventory stated that the total of pasture,
tillage, mowing and meadow was 2,502 acres or 12% of the
town. What was the total acreage of the
6. Based upon your answers to # 4 & #5 above, what percentage of the town
would have been cleared in 1831?
7. Does this percentage match the map depicted in Figure
4? Why or why not?
Worksheet 5: Analyzing a Diagram
1. List the species present on a site three years after abandonment. Blackberries, sumacs and other shrubs
2. Which species competes most successfully on an abandoned Massachusetts agricultural site for the first 80 years? White Pine
3. What conditions favor the sprouting of trees like beech, maple and oak? Moist soil and enough shade to suppress pine seedlings.
4. In which stage do you think Harvard Forest would have
been in 1903 when the research forest was created? Stage
5. What stage would it be in now? Stage 6.
Assessment 1: Test
Forest to Farm and Back Again I, II,
III / Worksheet
1 / Worksheet 2 / History
of Petersham / Worksheet 3 / Population
Density Maps / Worksheet 4 / Forest
Succession Diagram /
Worksheet 5 / Application and Integration/ Test / Reflective Exercise /