How The Environment Has Shaped the State

From Sustenance to Leisure on Minnesota Land

Expert Essay: Associate professor of history Michael J. Lansing, published in Environmental History as well as Ethics, Place, and Environment, highlights the many ways people have made use of Minnesota's flora and fauna over time and reviews the state's more recent efforts at conservation.

Photograph of Niagara Cave waterfall

Niagara Cave Waterfall

Waterfall inside Niagara Cave, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 2010s. Used with the permission of Niagara Cave.

Niagara Cave Rock Formation

Niagara Cave rock formation

Niagara Cave rock formation, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 2010s. Used with the permission of Niagara Cave.

Photograph of "Granddad Formation" Niagara Cave

"Granddad Formation" inside Niagara Cave

The "Granddad Formation" inside Niagara Cave, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 2010s. Used with the permission of Niagara Cave.

Photograph of Gastropod fossil Niagara Cave

Niagara Cave gastropod fossil

Fossilized gastropod inside Niagara Cave, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 2010s. Used with the permission of Niagara Cave.

Map of Niagara Cave system

Maps of Niagara Cave

A plan map (above) and a section map (below) of Niagara Cave. Published in R. K. Bower and T. N. Bayer’s Guide to the Caves of Minnesota (Minneapolis: Minnesota Geological Survey, 1967), pages 28 and 39.

Photo of old "wishing well" at Niagara Cave

"Wishing well" inside Niagara Cave

A postcard with a color illustration of the "wishing well" inside Niagara Cave, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 1945.

Color Illustration of waterfall in Niagara Cave

Waterfall inside Niagara Cave

Postcard with a color illustration of a waterfall inside Niagara Cave, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 1945.

Photograph of Stalactite Room at Niagara Cave

Stalactite Room, Niagara Cave

A chamber with stalactites called the Stalactite Room inside Niagara Cave, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 1941.

Photograph of entrance lodge at Niagara Cave, 1940

Entrance lodge of Niagara Cave

Niagara Cave, Harmony, Minnesota, ca. 1940.

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