Those stories, popular as they are, often portray those barons of commerce as greedy, self-serving and loving a lavish lifestyle – exclusive, private clubs notwithstanding.
But Michigan natural resource history also includes many stories about industry magnates who made things better for the public through their efforts. They may have donated large tracts of land for public use or for species protection, provided necessary funding for conservation initiatives, and/or had the political muscle to move it forward.
Now, here’s a story about the well-heeled private Upper Peninsula club called the Huron-Mountain Club. It has a long history of exclusivity. And it is attempting to restrict public access to the Salmon Trout River. Michigan law specifies that any navigable stream is open to the public. The club claims it is restricting access to protect the resident coaster brook trout.
Is this a selfless act for the greater good of a rare resource of special interest to the state?
I suspect not, but you can decide Tony Hansen, gets at the historical details of this tug-o-war between the well-heeled and Joe-regulars in an Outdoor Life blog posting. This is America, after all.
Read more: Lawyers, Trout, and Money