In February 2007, Fishtown Preservation Society, Inc., an IRS Section 501(c)(3) organization (FPS), acquired a quarter-acre tract on the north side of the Leland River in Leland, Michigan. The $2.7 million purchase included eight shanties, two smokehouses, 200 feet of docks along the Leland River, and other ancillary buildings. At that time FPS also acquired the fish tugs Joy and Janice Sue and their related commercial fishing licenses and equipment.
In early 2016, FPS acquired two neighboring shanties and their deep lots on the south side of the Leland River. As a result, the property now owned by FPS comprises most of the key historic elements of Leland’s Fishtown, which extends from the Leland River dam to the river mouth at Leland Harbor and Lake Michigan. The Fishtown Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in January 2022. Fishtown is also a contributing complex in the Leland Historic District, listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.