ACHP 2021 Section 3 Report to the President


Leasing a Historic Property with a Shared Mission Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, Wisconsin In 1999, private property owner Mary Griggs Burke conveyed her estate, a former logging camp known as Forest Lodge, to the Forest Service and Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest via the Trust for Public Lands.With limited funding to manage the 15 buildings and grounds at Forest Lodge, the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest began exploring options that

Thanks to the lease, Forest Lodge has become a setting for conservation education. (Northland College)

with a progressive focus on the environment and sustainability, to operate and maintain Forest Lodge for 60 years.This marks the first time the Forest Service has used the Section 111 authority for such a lease.The lease has created more opportunities for public use of Forest Lodge than ever before.Through the lease, Northland College has coordinated the operations of Forest Lodge as an environmental education and conference center, hosting programs and events, and coordinating its use by other institutions, organizations, and public and private groups. Forest Lodge has also served as a hub for historic preservation trades, hosting the HistoriCorps Institute program, the educational and training arm of HistoriCorps, where students learn hands-on skills for successful preservation construction projects.Additionally, Forest Lodge has partnered with the Cable Natural History Museum for interpretive walks of the grounds.Thanks to the lease, Northland College and the Forest Service have been able to work together to protect and preserve the site and provide conservation education programming to the public. “Northland will coordinate use of this place—and it is already an ecological campus, which is the whole idea that Mary Burke had way back in 1999.” Jason Maloney, Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center Director and Forest Lodge restoration project manager

would provide opportunities for public use of Forest Lodge, specifically in using the leasing provisions of Section 111 of the National Historic Preservation Act. Following

procedures designed for establishing a special use permit, the Forest Service determined the market value of the lease, conducted environmental reviews, and developed an operating plan for a lessee.The lessee would be required to develop a business plan, to carry property and liability insurance, and be responsible for capital improvements.To ensure the operation was profitable for the partner and ultimately ensure the long-term success of the lease, the terms of the lease would allow the lessee to begin payment in the fifth year, and the length of the lease would also allow the lessee to take advantage of historic preservation tax credits.The Forest Service set aside 50 acres of the 872-acre estate, located near the southern shore of Lake Namekagon east of Cable,Wisconsin, in hopes that it could be preserved and cultivated as a premier center for environmental leadership, sustainability, and conservation education. In 2017, the Forest Service executed a lease with Northland College, a private, liberal arts college Restored interior available for use for a variety of programs (Northland College)

Former Northland College President Michael Miller and Paul Strong, forest supervisor of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, execute the Section 111 lease. (Northland College)


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