IU Northwest Department of Psychology faculty publications and conference presentations

Permanent link for this collectionhttps://hdl.handle.net/2022/22688


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    Citizen Action for the Conservation of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore in Northwest Indiana
    (Horizon Research Publishing Corporation, 2017) Smith, Stephanie; Mark, Steve
    The present article discusses citizen action strategies employed to preserve the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore in the United States. Ecological pioneers Henry Chandler Cowles and Victor Shelford deemed this region to be of scientific importance, and the region played a role in the formation of the Ecological Society of America and The Nature Conservancy. Citizen action strategies included creating grassroots nonpartisan voluntary organizations, soliciting signatures on petitions, organizing letter-writing campaigns, soliciting media coverage, legal action, and persuading politicians to support preservation efforts. The struggle between heavy industry, residents, and conservationists resulted in the eventual parceling of the Northwest Indiana shoreline between steel mills, public lands, and residential areas. In one of the longest journeys to the passage of a national park bill in the history of the United States, the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore was established by an act of Congress in 1966. Several tracts of land have been added to it, and today the Indiana National Lakeshore consists of 15,000 non-contiguous acres along 15 miles of the south shore of Lake Michigan, with almost two million annual visitors.