Melinda's Statement of Purpose
My father asked me to 'do something' about some unsettling insights he encountered about history he, himself, had witnessed. The request was made a few months before he died in 1991.
He wanted the truth told. After I understood, so did I.
Nothing about my life has ever been the same since.
Sometimes 'family history, has unexpected ramifications. Dad turned over to me piles or records, photographs, and a copy of the book Grandfather wrote in 1937, “Picturing Miracles of Plant and Animal Life,” published by J. B. Lippincott Co., Philadelphia and London.
I started reading. Shock followed shock. Eventually, I began to realize just how long it has been the practice of corporations to target our air, land, and water for their profit, and how they accomplish their goals. I also learned how ruthless they are.
I was born into environmentalism. It was when my father asked me to find out why the historic record of his father's work had disappeared that I took this seriously.
My grandfather's name was Arthur C. Pillsbury. You have probably never heard of him. The reason he disappeared from history is the work of the same people we are fighting today.
Grandfather made the first nature movie in 1909, beginning his life-long campaign to awaken in people, who might never encounter the glories of nature, the wonder and love these had awakened in him the first time he stood in a waist high profusion of wild flowers in 1895. It was a stunning sight, moving him emotionally and spiritually.
To quote Grandfather - "To see a flower blossoming, its life so like our own, awakens in us a love for the flower, its life so like our own, and the wish to preserve it."
In 1912 Grandfather built the first lapse-time motion picture camera which could show us the living wonder of a flower blooming. They began calling him the Wild Flower man of Yosemite.
In 1926 he built the first microscopic motion picture camera at a borrowed lab at Berkeley, paying all the expenses himself. He recognized that scientists, and all of us, need to see to understand what was beyond human vision.
He wanted everyone to love nature, understand the wonders our world holds, and so join in preserving it forever. Like Muir, Grandfather was a preservationist, not a conservationist.
John Muir insisted my Grandfather's photos be used in the last book he wrote, “The Yosemite.” When the Sierra Club republished the book they took them out.
The site I put up to preserve Grandfather's legacy is: Arthur C. Pillsbury Home.
The first part of my life was spent as an activist on problems which in my direct experience I could see where harming people. People are being harmed by Big Oil. This, and many other things need to change.
Arthur C. Pillsbury Foundation
Founder and President
DANS – Disaster Alert News Service
MacPherson Investment Group,
Executive Vice President
Lone Star Iconoclast