Fifty years ago today, on September 3, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Wilderness Act into law after more than sixty drafts and eight years of work. When Johnson signed the act, he made the following statement: "If future generations are to remember us with gratitude rather than contempt, we must leave them a glimpse of the world as it was in the beginning, not just after we got through with it."
Nearly twenty years later, March 27, 1984, 16,500 acres of rugged, wooded land between the Eleven Point and Current rivers in Oregon and Ripley counties in the Missouri Ozarks were “designated as wilderness and shall be known as the Irish Wilderness.”
The inclusion of the area once known as Father Hogan’s Irish Settlement was not done without controversy. Mystery of the Irish Wilderness outlines the competing camps (Sierra Club and environmentalists vs. local landowners) and their arguments that supported or opposed its inclusion.
See more photos of the Irish Wilderness on our Facebook page: