Forest History Center, 2609 County Road 76, Grand Rapids, Minnesota

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Forest History Center

Forest History Center fire tower
Early 1900s Forest Cook Shack
Address: 2609 County Road 76
Grand Rapids, Minnesota
Itasca County, Minnesota
State/province: Minnesota
Country: United States
Historic Function: Forest/woods

Grand Rapids Itasca

Forest History Center, 2609 County Road 76, Grand Rapids, Minnesota
(47.257466° N, 93.51128° WLatitude: 47°15′26.878″N
Longitude: 93°30′40.608″W
The Forest History Center is a recreated turn-of the century logging camp operated by the Minnesota Historical Society.


Site History

This turn-of-the-century logging camp in Grand Rapids, Minnesota explores the past, present and future of the northern forests of Minnesota through costumed characters and museum exhibits. Visitors can board the moored river "wanigan," a floating cook shack, take a seat on the porch of a 1930s Minnesota Forest Service patrolman's cabin, climb a 100-foot fire tower or hike along the site's self-guided trails.

The site is filled with living-history characters who acquaint visitors with life in a 1900 logging camp. The camp cook and cook's assistants (called cookees), the company clerk, bullcook (camp janitor), saw filer, lumberjacks, barn boss (who cares for the draft horses), the blacksmith and "wood butcher" (carpenter), perform the duties of actual logging camp workers. Visitors can ask questions and can often assist them in their work.

The Forest History Center opened to the public in 1978. More than 5,000 square feet of new exhibits and a renovated visitor center, completed in 2004, look at ecology and conservation, forest products, fire, timber harvesting, population growth, the future of the forest and how visitors can impact decisions about how forests are managed and cared for.

At learning stations along a half-mile of renovated trails, visitors can see forest management techniques put into practice and take part in decision-making opportunities about forest management.

Memories and stories


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