January 1, 2003
Meeting February 1st
February 1st IROFA will have its 2003 winter meeting. We will be meeting at the
Holiday Inn on Saturday afternoon for a discussion of our plans for 2003
and beyond. In the evening we will be dinning together, after dinner there will
be an IROFA presentation and further discussion. We have arranged a rate of no
more than $85.00 per night. There is an advance rate of $76.48 which is
nonrefundable. If you click on the link you will go to
www.metrodome.com and you will be able to
access the group rate by typing IRF where indicated.
There will be a more informal gathering on Friday night. Some details have yet
to be worked out, such as the cost of the dinner and the exact time of our
meetings. It is very important to get a good turn out. This is going to be a
working meeting. This may be the most important event you ever attend as it
pertains to your future on Isle Royale. I want to remind everyone what is
required to be an IROFA member; you have to agree with our mission statement.
That means leaseholder, SUP's, longtime visitors, historians, rangers, can all
be part of our group. The hotel contact information is as follows: 1500
WASHINGTON AVENUE SOUTH MINNEAPOLIS, MN 55454, Toll-Free: (800)4483663,Tel:
Click on the
Report or NPS icon and read the entire administrative history of making Pictured
Rocks National Lake Shore. This gives an excellent
of the purchase process and many of the difficulties that the private owners had
with NPS, and how the NPS chose to interpret the law and deal with the local
community. The section quoted below is of particular interest for IROFA members.
(the first Superintendent of Pictured Rocks and subsequent Isle Royale
Superintendent) based [his] "proactive acquisition" program on a careful reading
of the enabling legislation. Public Law 89-668, which created the lakeshore,
clearly stated that: "Any owner or owners of improved property on the date of
its acquisition by the Secretary may, as a condition to such acquisition,
retain, for a term not to exceed twenty five years the right of use and
occupancy" Yet that section of the bill also contained an ambiguous clause which
limited such rights to those properties which do "not impair the usefulness and
attractiveness of the area designated for inclusion." Beattie decided to apply
this clause to any properties at or adjacent to areas of public use."
policy went unnoticed until complaints from property owners reached the Regional
Office. William W. Redmond, the Regional Solicitor, was called in to give an
Beattie's interpretation of the act. Redmond undertook a hasty review of the
legislative history and determined that owners of improved properties had the
right to twenty-five-year lease. Beattie felt Redmond's ruling made it an "utter
impossibility" to achieve a "viable and workable park unit." He refused to
accept an interpretation which was "to the overall detriment of our program and
of the interests of the great majority of the American public." He asked
Hamilton to suspend negotiations on all improved tracts while Beattie lobbied
Associate Regional Director Edmunds to get the ruling reversed. Redmond,
however, saw nothing legally wrong with his initial opinion. But rather than get
in the way of a determined management team, he did agree to withdraw his
memorandum. Land acquisition went forward as before, although the Pictured Rocks
program was always at risk that a condemnation proceeding might lead the Justice
Department to rule in favor of more long-term leases. The Pictured Rocks
National Lakeshore Advisory Commission fully supported Beattie's disinclination
to allow twenty-five-year leases. 
"The legacy of
Superintendent Beattie's "proactive" approach to land acquisition was a
tremendous asset to the long-term resource management of the Pictured Rocks.
From a very early stage of its development, the Park Service had control of the
shoreline zone. The long drawn-out
acquisition history of Sleeping Bear Dunes was avoided as were the unsightly
private dwellings that continue to detract from Isle Royale a half century after
the park was created. Yet a reservoir of ill-will also was a legacy of
the rapid displacement of property owners from the shoreline zone. This was
particularly the case in the Grand Sable Lake area. A string of cottages and
private homes along the lake were reluctantly sold. The threat of condemnation
and the promise of extensive public development of the area by the Park Service
prodded the residents out. Yet, after the properties were demolished, little in
the way of public development took place at the Grand Sable Lake. Home owners
who originally felt they had received a fair price for their lands then felt
cheated because their continued use of the property under a lease would not have
conflicted with public development."
adjacent picture is the of the "Sullivan's Cabin" located at Pictured Rocks and
is used a "ranger station/residence". It is touted for its energy efficiency.
Click on the picture and you can find out more about how this building is
powered, which I do find interesting, however, nothing about the history.
Further this building and many others managed by NPS are just as "unsightly" as
the ones our families have been in for over a hundred years. I don't wish to be
confrontational, but I think it is fair to point out some of the contradictions
we face in dealing with NPS.
Watch the news story played on KDLH - Ch. 3 about
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