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Herman “Duff” Holbrook (’48, ’50)


Nov. 13, 2015 – Herman “Duff” Holbrook (’48 B.S., ’50 M.S. forestry) passed away July 17, 2015, at the age of 92. Holbrook has been recognized as the nation’s foremost authority on wild turkey.

After a brief stint with the Georgia Fish and Game Department, he joined the S.C. Wildlife Department, now the Department of Natural Resources, in 1950 on a joint project with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to restore wild turkeys and deer to South Carolina’s Piedmont and mountain regions where they were all but nonexistent. He moved hundreds of turkeys from the state’s Lowcountry to its Upstate region and in less than a decade laid the foundation for a full recovery of the state’s population.

Holbrook’s work led to the establishment of the South Carolina-based nonprofit National Wild Turkey Federation in 1973 and to the wild turkey being named the state wild game bird of South Carolina in 1976.

After completing the restoration project in 1959, Holbrook began a new career with the U.S. Forest Service during which he created a coordinated timber and wildlife management system that became the standard for all southeastern national forests. Just before his planned retirement in 1983, he was asked to manage White Oak Forestry, a position he held for nearly 20 years.

Read the full obituary.



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