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Putnam Park is a 230-acre natural area owned by UW-Eau Claire. Most of the park is forested, although there is a small marsh area at the eastern end of the park and a small prairie area at the western end. Most of the park's land was donated to the city of Eau Claire in 1909 by Henry C. Putnam, who wished to see the land remain in its natural state and serve as a botanical laboratory and park in perpetuity. Over the years smaller tracts of land have been added to the original tract donated by Mr. Putnam. Ownership of the park was transferred from the city to the university in 1957. About half of Putnam Park is designated a Wisconsin State Natural Area.