Local historian brings News' Burroughs feature into the classroom

BACK IN THE CLASSROOM — Retired Margaretville and Onteora teacher Dr. Bill Birns of Fleischmanns joined the fifth-, seventh-, and eighth-grade social studies classes at MCS last Wednesday morning where he read and discussed the fifth chapter in the Catskill Mountain News sponsored Newspaper in Education series about the friendship between Roxbury native John Burroughs and President Theodore Roosevelt. In chapter five, the students focused on the differences between conservation and preservation. Dr. Birns emphasized that though they were very different philosophies, the two groups came together to save America’s natural beauty. This concept is being applied today with the Catskill Park Coalition where conservationists and preservationists are joining forces to promote the Catskill Park as an economic tourist attraction while maintaining responsible stewardship of this valuable resource. Dr. Birns is President of the Board of Directors of Woodchuck Lodge in Roxbury, the summer home of John Burroughs, and is also the official historian of the Town of Middletown. — Contributed photo