Directions: The Forest Supervisor's Office is located in the city of Cass Lake, Minn. off Highway 371, two blocks from the main intersection of Highway 371 and Highway 2. Watch for the Forest Service information sign, and look for the three-story log building just one block off the highway.
The Forest Supervisor's Office is open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Forest information can also be found at www.fs.usda.gov/chippewa or on Facebook and Twitter @ChippewaNF
Tweet us this winter! Whether you are out enjoying the trails or just cruising the lakes, send your pictures at #ChippewaNF or #NoteToSelf2018 to show us your favorite Forest sites!
History: One of our favorite historic stops! The Forest Supervisor's Office is on the National Register of Historic Sites. Built in 1935 by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Company 705, it continues to be utilized as the main headquarters for the Chippewa National Forest.
Using Finnish-style construction, the boys of the CCC and Work Project Administration (WPA) created a log structure that would be difficult to duplicate today.
Under the the guidance of Ike Boekenoogen, a master craftsman, the crews traced, notched and grooved each log by hand. Each layer of logs was tightly fit and required no chinking or nailing.
Made from 100-year old red pine logged from Star Island and Lake Thirteen, the 8,700 square feet building equals the size of four average-sized homes.
More than 16,000 lineal feet of red pine logs, each 10-16 inches in diameter, were used for the outer walls and partitions. Heavy wooden pegs set into drilled holes allows the logs to settle without shifting.
Visitors should note the hand-hammered ironwork on the doors and hinges. Gnarled frost-cracked maple stair rails add even more character to the interior of this log building. Walk up the hand-hewn split log steps to take in the glacial boulder fireplace.
The 50-foot fireplace stands in the center of the building. It is made of split and matched boulders found in the area. Measuring 14 x 14 feet at the base and tapering to 10 x 10 at the top, he fireplace is made with 265 tons of rock. Nels Bergley of Walker, Minn. was the designed and builder.
Look for the rock in the fire place that is shaped like a Forest Service shield!
Events: Tours of this National Historic Site are available upon request. We do ask that visitors interested in a tour call ahead of time to make sure someone is available to lead the tour. (Visitors are otherwise restricted to just the reception area of the first floor.)
This is a wonderful site to start a tour of all the Civilian Conservation Corps sites on the National Forest. Make sure to ask about other CCC sites while you are at the Forest Supervisor's Office!