Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. William Cremin

Second Advisor

Dr. Elizabeth B. Garland

Third Advisor

Dr. Robert I. Sundick

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


In an attempt to generate predictive statements about site structure and location, the nature of lumber industry development is examined through historical and environmental relationships between logging sites, early logging methods, transportation technology, and the presettlement forest as reconstructed from the original General Land Office surveyor field notes and plats. Eighteen historic logging sites recorded on the Huron National Forest and within the Au Sable River watershed comprise the data set. The purpose of this study is two-fold: (a) to reconstruct the lumber industry history along the Au Sable River, and (b) to develop a means of locating, identifying, and assessing the physical remains of logging activities. Analytical results suggest that logging site distribution may be correlated with technological developments and historical trends in timber demand. By presenting a more timely picture of the vast forests the nineteenth-century lumbermen knew, presettlement forest reconstructions may be invaluable to future archaeological studies of the lumber industry.