From The Forest

What We’ve Learned About Catskill Forests Since 2014 With Dr. Mike Kudish

November 14, 2019

Dr. Michael Kudish will discuss a variety of topics since he last appeared on From the Forest in 2014. Mike will discuss his findings surroundings hemlock forests going back thousands of years in the Catskills up to the tannery-era and the present. We'll also go into his extensive study of land-use history surrounding Native American burning, agriculture, 1st growth forest, and forest products industries and their network of roads.

Michael Kudish is an author, railroad historian, forester, and retired professor. He received his Ph.D. in 1971 from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry at Syracuse. His dissertation, on the history of Catskill forests, was the beginning of a lifelong study. It was later expanded and published as The Catskill Forest: A History. His previous degrees included a B.S. from the City College of New York, and an M.S. from Cornell University.

As a professor in the Division of Forestry at Paul Smith's College, he has written three books on the vegetation of the Adirondacks, including Adirondack Upland Flora, a number of articles on forest history of both the Catskills and Adirondacks. As a railroad historian, he wrote Where Did The Tracks Go?, an initial description of railroads in the Adirondacks, followed by Railroads of the Adirondacks, for a long time considered the definitive work on the subject. He has retired from Paul Smiths, moved to the Catskills, and is working on a four-volume set on the Mountain Railroads of New York State. It updates Railroads of the Adirondacks in the first three volumes, and adds a fourth volume covering the Catskills.