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History

MARINETTE COUNTY FOREST HISTORY


The history of Marinette County Forest is typical of other timbered counties across the Great Lakes Region. Originally this county was covered with magnificent stands of timber. These forests provided raw material for a thriving lumbering industry from 1880 to 1910.

About 1910 at the close of the logging era 2/3 of the county was cut over and held for land settlement and farming. Prices of agricultural products remained high because of World War I.

During the fall of 1920 and the following year agricultural prices dropped causing a long sustained drop in incomes. The new settlers with decreased incomes, had difficulty paying operating costs. As land contracts and mortgages became due many farmers went out of business and consequently property taxes were not paid. By 1924 tax delinquency became an acute problem.

Marinette County recognized the magnitude of the tax delinquency situation and, at the urging of an energetic county treasurer, was one of the first counties to make wise use of tax deed laws.

This county was among the first to participate in the Wisconsin County Forest Crop Laws, with the entry of 14,003 acres in 1930. It should be noted that the county board adopted this resolution in 1930 but state records indicate acceptance of this first entry in 1933.