This is a metal sign produced by the New York State Conservation Department between 1926 and 1970. It would have been posted out in a wild area to notify hunters, hikers and fishermen that land ahead was owned by the State and open for numerous recreation activities by all.
At 8 inches across, it would be readily seen in the woods, printed in gold and blue New York state colors. (Note, on the sign it is "faux gold," a deep orange-yellow.) It is made of very lightweight, thin metal -- we believe it is aluminum.
CONDITION is used, but signs like this are rare in any condition because most of the signs ordered were put up; therefore "New Old Stock" signs are difficult to find. This one clearly was nailed up somewhere, likely on a large tree and pressed against the trunk to hug the bark. It has been flattened, but crinkles and waves in the metal remain.
There are two original mounting holes (12 o'clock and 6 o'clock positions). The 6-o'clock hole appears unused. Two more holes have been made in the sign, one between the words STATE and LAND, and the other above the A in LAND.
IMPORTANT: The center portion - Timber / Wildlife / Recreation / Water - is nearly damage free and displays very well. Much of the edge is seriously scuffed, showing silvery metal. The back is in very good condition with almost no scuffing. ALSO IMPORTANT: The back would clean up considerably -- there is almost no scuffing/scratching/scraping BUT there is "surface crud" on the back we have not touched.
BACKGROUND: The Conservation Department was a governmental agency operated by the State of New York between 1926 and 1970. Its earliest predecessor dates to 1895, when with an eye for regulating fish and game, the state established the Fisheries, Game and Forest Commission to oversee hunting and fishing regulations and work against poaching. In 1911, the FG&FC was combined with several other commissions, and renamed the Conservation Commission. In 1926, after modernizing and upgrading, the commission was renamed the New York State Conservation Department, which lasted more than 40 years until 1970, when the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation was created.
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