Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge Celebrates 100 Years

The Jo Daviess Conservation Foundation (JDCF) invites you to a free program on the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge, celebrating 100 years. The event will take place on Friday, May 10 at the Galena Territory social hall, 2000 Territory Drive, Galena. There will be complimentary Potosi beer and popcorn while supplies last. Wildfowl displays from 6 PM to 7 PM. Program at 7 PM.

Ed Britton, Wildlife Refuge Manager, will present the story of the Upper Miss Refuge, which is celebrating 100 years as a protected habitat, free and open for all to enjoy. 

At 261 river miles and 244,000 acres of wetland habitat, it is the longest, most visited (by people and wildlife) Refuge in the lower 48 states.  It extends from Wabasha, Minnesota to Rock Island, Illinois, with many access points bordering Jo Daviess County.    

In 1922 a Chicago businessman and obsessive fisherman by the name of Will Dilg pulled the nation’s hunters and anglers into a successful lobbying effort, and in 1924, convinced Congress to establish the Refuge.

Ed’s presentation will cover the origins of the Refuge, species monitored and protected, the history and function of the Upper Mississippi lock and dam system, activities sponsored by the Refuge, and current projects underway to help preserve Refuge habitat for the benefit and enjoyment of us all.

For more information contact Kay Weibel at

Click to subscribe for convenient delivery of Julien’s Journal by mail, or call (563) 557-7571. Single issues are available in print at area newsstands and digitally on

Comment here