This 40.5-acre marsh and upland area was previously a Navy seaplane base (1927) and also a NIKE missile base (1954 to 1963). In 1972 the Defense Department turned this site over to the Environmental Protection Agency for use as a wetlands research area. In April of 1990, at the center of the property, six acres of meadowland were still completely covered with pavement and huge steel doors were lying on the ground. Underground there were three large vaults each containing a NIKE missile. In 1990, the doors were removed, the cement was hauled away, and Nature, with a little help from man, could once again flourish. In May of 1993, the Environmental Protection Agency ("EPA") granted stewardship of the area to the Grosse Ile Nature and Land Conservancy. In 2009 the Nature Area was made part of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge. The Conservancy is here to protect and assist Nature in reclaiming this area.