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Wisconsin National Register of Historic Places

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Fifield Fire Lookout Tower (J. McKay photo, 195)

Fifield Fire Lookout Tower (J. McKay photo, 195)

Fifield Fire Lookout Tower
STH 70, Town of Fifield, Price County
Date of construction: 1932

The Fifield Fire Lookout Tower is situated within the rolling forested terrain of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. Standing 100 feet in height, it is four sided, made of galvanized steel, and is set on four concrete piers that define a square 19 feet per side. A seven foot square cab tops the tower and it is accessed by an exterior ladder surrounded by a steel cage.

The Wisconsin Conservation Commission, now the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, erected the tower in 1932, a year prior to the establishment of the national forest. The Forest Service assumed responsibility for tower operation in 1935. The Fifield Fire Lookout Tower was constructed at a time when wildfires raged across the "cutover" landscape of northern Wisconsin. It served as an observation point, staffed by lookouts, that was part of a broader fire detection and suppression system. There were once 38 such towers located within the national forest, though today only nine remain standing. The Forest Service has established a trail that leads to the tower, with interpretive panels detailing tower history located at the trail head.

The tower was last used for fire observation in 1973.

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