THE OUTDOOR NATURE CLUB OF HOUSTON, TEXAS Winter, 1933
Arrangements for This Year's Bird Census Are Already Under Way
Our annual Christmas bird census for
1932 was taken on December 18th by a
committee composed of Misses Kaiser
and Beasley, Messrs. Clapp, Kiefner and
Heiser. More than 76,000 birds, of 61
species, were listed in a tramp of twelve
miles in the varied terrain near Cedar
Bluff, on the San Jacinto river. Observation of special interest included an
osprey, brown pelicans, woodcock, and
a vast, seemingly endless flock of blackbirds coming into the swamps to roost.
The complete report was published in
Bird-Lore for January-February, 1933.
Announcement of the date, the leaders
and the complete plan for the 1933
Christmas bird census will be given to
the daily papers in a few days. Anyone
desiring to join a group should get in
touch with one of the leaders. Information concerning "bird roosts," rare or
strange birds and oddities of bird life or
bird conduct will be most welcome to
these enthusiastic "birders."
Our previous Bulletins, and several
Nature pamphlets recently distributed
by the Club, have been sponsored by
generous friends. It is pertinent to note
that practically all expenditures from
the Club's treasury are made in connection with the promotion of its more serious objectives, the expenses of hikes
and other recreational affairs being
borne by those who derive the pleasure
and benefit therefrom. This is a logical
policy, as many of our members are such
because of the desire to foster, by their
influence and support, conservation and
educational programs in line with the
purposes printed on the back of the
Club's membership card and elsewhere
in this Bulletin.
Memorial trees: The Avenue of Magnolias along Buffalo Drive, sponsored by
the City Federation of Women's Clubs
becomes a fitting memorial to deceased
members of the club. Eight trees were
planted in 1932.
A permanent record was made of the
names of those to whose memory the
Club paid tribute:
Mr. Sigmund Westheimer
Mrs. Annie C. James
Mrs. Josephine Van Gaskin Padgett
Mr. J. B. Leaman
Mrs. Fannie Grainger Lidstone
Mrs. Eliza De Lesdernier
Mr. S. A. M. Harrison
Miss Grace N. Worthing.
A message of foresight and earnest,
friendly counsel, is that of Lawrence H.
Daingerfield to his Houston and Texas
friends, published in this Bulletin.
The Outdoor Nature Club has consistently advocated the dedication of adequate natural areas of every type, definitely and in perpetuity, for scientific,
historical and aesthetic purposes. Large
forest reserves, arboretums and wild life
sanctuaries are available to many of the
larger cities of the United States, but
the idea has not yet received due attention in this part of the country.
The picturesque bottom lands of the
San Jacinto river and similar streams
near Houston now offer the best opportunities to preserve for the population
of our great future metropolis a fitting
sample of the primeval nature of this
section. The land .is cheap, held in large
tracts, and still fairly primitive in character.
Houston newspapers have urged the
acquisition of these scenic junglelands
for parks and preserves. This is a matter that should have the serious consideration of scientific institutions, civic
groups and public-spirited citizens while
there is yet opportunity to take suitable
To my friends of Houston and Texas:
Ten years have passed since the writer
first saw Houston, and only a few months
since the city last faded from his eyes
in the gray twilight and the horizon
sinking toward the sea.
During those years a deep and abiding
affection filled my heart for Houston,
the bayou hinterland, and all Texas, with
her myriad people filled with Southern
Now that Texas has passed from my
vision, I cannot resist a tendency to
idealize a trifle, picturing in my mental
eye all the loveliness of the primeval
outdoors that was and still might be hers
through all the years to come. We realize that much which might have been
saved, to epitomize that which is primitive in nature, has gone on forever, yet
there remain a few wooded lowlands
along the winding bayous and rivers adjacent to Houston that could still be preserved and restored as Nature destined
they should be, for thousands, maybe
millions, yet unborn to look upon and
enjoy, even as have you and I.
One cannot look back over ten years
of contact with Nature in Houston's environs and fail to feel many pangs of
regret in realizing that much that was
richest in scientific and historical value,
loveliest in unspoiled beauty, has gone,
never to be restored. The transition
has been slow, so insidious, that many
have failed to sense the loss. Yet this
loss of that which might have been leaves
all who cherish the great outdoors as if
he were separated from his dearest
friends. There is such a feeling of loneliness when one returns to his accustomed haunts and misses the old, familiar
woodland faces which had long smiled
upon him from green-mansioned aisles,
that sometimes the wayfarer wishes he
had never repassed that way. This is
the fact that I want to impress on the
many Houston friends before it is too
Help to save as large a fragment of
Nature in its pristine state as is possiK
now. Do not wait longer, for there ^^
so little left completely unspoiled or e ^B
partly intact from the hand of the Cr ^»
tor that even now it is almost too law
to secure that which may be restored
as a haven for wild life, an arboretum
for Dixie flora, and a place where Nature may be allowed to have her vagrant
way, entirely uncivilized and untamed.
Every bird, every flower, every leaf
atremble on shrub or vine or towering
tree, will unconsciously bless a Houston
that will do such a glorious thing, such
a glamorous gesture from a generous
The writer cannot now be accused of
any selfish motive in encouraging action
to save a real Nature sanctuary in the
vicinity of Houston, for his work has
called him far away, where he may not
enjoy the contacts of such a haven. In
his fond dreams he hopes to see just
such a heritage, however, not only for
the simple dwellers that may find their
natural habitat therein, but for the people of Houston and Texas and her visitors
through all the years to come.
LAWRENCE H. DAINGERFIELD.
Program: J. W. Stiles, 1902 Bradsht (
Second National Bank Bldg., T. 9278.
Outing: C. H. Kiefner, 2143 Sul Ross,
428 Esperson Bldg., C. 1696.
Publicity: J. M. Heiser, Jr., 1724 Kipling, Texas Co., H. 8654.
Hospitality: Miss Mabel Kaiser, 2359
Shepherd Drive, H. 6915.
Conservation: Alston Clapp, Sr., 3718
Mt. Vernon, Anderson-Clayton, H. 3912.
Art: Miss Tillie Schmidt, 2359 Shepherd Drive, H. 6915.
Pictures: Miss Edith James, 3003
Travis, Kress Bldg., H. 0875.
Membership: Miss Erna Giesecke, 1509
Courtlandt, V. 21188.
Bacteriology: Rex D. Frazier, 2602
Isabella, 1 Main Street, H. 6179.
Birds: Miss Mabel Cassell, Public
Schools, Great Southern Life Bldg.
Conchology: Mr. Walter Westgate,
1015 Oliver, P. 5846.
Fish: Bud A. Randolph, 24 Waugh
Drive, T. 0668.
Astronomy: L. H. Dangerfield, U.
Weather Bureau, C. 6919. t
Geology: Kenneth Hartley, Geologic
Department of Humble Co., F. 3121.
Taxidermy: Parham Haddon, 1110
Courtlandt, T. 8733.
Flowers: S. J. Mitchell, Brazos Hotel.
Animals: Hans Nagel, Hermann Park
Zoo, H. 0568.