This is an ecological history of property and a cultural history of rural ecosystems in one of Wisconsin's most famous regions, the Kickapoo Valley. While examining the national war on soil erosion in the 1930s, a controversial real estate development scheme, Amish land settlement, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dam project, and Native American efforts to assert longstanding land claims, Lynne Heasley traces the historical development of modern American property debates within evermore-diverse rural landscapes and cultures. Heasley argues that the way public discourse has framed environmental debates hides the full shape our system of property has taken in rural communities and landscapes. She shows how democratic and fluid visions of property - based on community relationships - have coexisted alongside individualistic visions of property rights. This environmental biography of a landscape and its people holds lessons for many communities.