50th Anniversary Articles

Articles about the Park’s 50th Anniversary.

History Mystery: How Gert Wellisch saved Sand Island Lighthouse

History Mystery: How Gert Wellisch saved Sand Island Lighthouse

Gert Wellisch (1896-1966) spent her childhood summers in the Apostle Islands. In 1910 her father Robert Wellisch, a well-to-do manufacturer from St. Paul, joined with three other businessmen to build an imposing, Adirondack-style lodge on the west shore of Sand Island.   The West Bay Club The main room in the West Bay Club Gert by the wood pile at the West Bay Club in 1916 Gert grew up to be a St. Paul schoolteacher, and her small cadre of female city friends became a regular fixture of the Sand Island summer community during the World War I era. Their island adventures, exploring forests,...

History Mystery: Emmanuel Luick photos document life of the Sand Island community and beyond

History Mystery: Emmanuel Luick photos document life of the Sand Island community and beyond

  Emmanuel Luick served as the head lighthouse keeper at the Sand Island Lighthouse from 1892 through 1920 when it was the first Apostle Islands lighthouse to become automated.  Sand Island Lighthouse Along with his duties in tending the light, Luick also documented life at the light station in his log book.  For a while he allowed his first wife, Ella, to assume this duty. Ella Luick was 16 when she married 27-year-old Luick in 1895.  She took over the light keeper's log, treating it like a diary, recording her boredom and dissatisfaction. Then in May 1905, Ella Luick jotted down that...

On the Islands and on the air: Apostle Islands Symposium recap on Wisconsin Public Radio

On the Islands and on the air: Apostle Islands Symposium recap on Wisconsin Public Radio

With over 650 registrants, the 50th Anniversary Resource Stewardship Symposium sponsored by Friends of the Apostle Islands was a huge success. If you missed it or just wanted to relive the excitement of the event, the Wisconsin Public Radio program, "Simply Superior" offers you a way to do just that. Hosted by award-winning radio personality Robin Washington, the first half of the hour-long program offers a taste of several of the nearly 30 programs given at the Symposium with commentary by Jeff Rennicke, Executive Director of Friends of the Apostle Islands. Washington acknowledged the...

Watch now: celebrating the science, arts and future of the Apostle Islands

Watch now: celebrating the science, arts and future of the Apostle Islands

Hundreds watched the virtual Apostle Islands 50th Anniversary Resource Stewardship Symposium event live. If you missed it – or want to watch some of your favorite sessions again – now you can, on the Friends of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore website. Watch, learn and enjoy hearing from experts in all aspects of the national lakeshore, as we celebrate the first 50 years of the park we love and look to the future. If you’re a recreational user of the park – a paddler, a camper, a hiker, a sailor, a boater, or a lighthouse lover, the Apostle Islands 50th Anniversary Resource Stewardship...

A challenge for participants and for you, as the Apostle Islands 50th Anniversary Resource Stewardship Symposium ends

A challenge for participants and for you, as the Apostle Islands 50th Anniversary Resource Stewardship Symposium ends

BAYFIELD, Wis. Saying, "stewardship starts with collaboration," Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Superintendent Lynne Dominy closed the 50th Anniversary Resource Stewardship symposium with three questions. She also presented the audience watching online with a challenge based on the presentations they had seen. During 2 days of presentations, almost 30 experts from a wide variety of fields revealed things about the park that many recreational visitors may not realize. Things like the remarkable diversity of plants and animals in and around the islands. Some, like the American marten and...

Symposium closing remarks

Symposium closing remarks

Thank you for participating in the Apostle Islands 50th Anniversary Resource Stewardship Symposium. We're pleased to present the web edition, which follows our 2-day live virtual event, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. To conclude the event, Lynne Dominy delivers a challenge to you, no matter what your relationship to the national lakeshore may be. She returned to the questions she asked during her opening remarks. We invite you to watch all of the wonderful sessions, then watch Lynne's closing remarks. And when you're done, let us know what you...

Under the surface and Zaaga’igan Ma’iinganag (lakewolves)

Under the surface and Zaaga’igan Ma’iinganag (lakewolves)

The Apostle Islands National Lakeshore (APIS) has personally impacted the lives of people across the nation. Lake Superior permeates nearly every aspect of Park visitor experience, forming the bonds between ecological, cultural, and deeply personal dimensions of the Park. Connections between our well-being and the protected waters of the Park are important but not always easy to access, maintain or articulate for all people. Under the Surface and Zaaga’igan Ma’iinganag (Lakewolves) are sister programs that provide literally immersive experiences to teens in the Apostle Islands. Northwest...

A Vulnerability Assessment for Terrestrial Ecosystems

A Vulnerability Assessment for Terrestrial Ecosystems

How might climate change affect Apostle Islands National Lakeshore? It’s a simple question with lots of potential answers! This presentation will describe a recently published climate change vulnerability assessment for the terrestrial ecosystems throughout the park. Peggy Burkman will describe why the park felt it was necessary to complete this vulnerability assessment, and she’ll also cover some of the important context of the Apostle Islands landscape that might cause climate change to play out differently than on the mainland. Stephen Handler will explain how the assessment was completed...

American Martens on the Apostle Islands

American Martens on the Apostle Islands

Rapid environmental change is reshaping ecosystems and driving species loss globally. Carnivore populations have declined and retracted rapidly and have been the target of numerous translocation projects. Identifying refuges, locations that are resistant to environmental change, should improve population recovery and persistence. American martens (Martes americana) were extirpated across much of the Great Lakes region by the 1930s and, despite multiple translocations beginning in the 1950s, martens remain of regional conservation concern. Surprisingly, martens were rediscovered in 2014 on...

Longitudinal Trends and Ecology of the Small Mammal Community

Longitudinal Trends and Ecology of the Small Mammal Community

As part of the first ever comprehensive survey of the mammal community of the Apostle Islands archipelago, we documented changes in distribution of small mammals since the establishment of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore in 1970. Using recent data, we also described trends in abundance and multiple aspects of small mammal species ecology. We trapped small mammals from 20 of the 22 islands of the archipelago (2017-2020) and compared those results to historical (1961- 2004) records. Small mammal community diversity was driven by island size and less so by island isolation, regardless of...