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Past land use in the lower Piedmont exerted an overwhelming influence on the present-day forest. Indians exerted considerable influence upon the virgin forest near their settlements through use of fire to clear bottom lands for cultivation and to improve hunting. Early settlers converted the forest to a farming country within 50 years. Close to 100 years of row cropping for cotton eroded the topsoil; farmland was then abandoned and reverted to a succession forest of pine and secondary hardwoods. The forest now constitutes 70 percent of the landscape.
The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.