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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Springstead in Iron County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Pinery Road - The Legend

Iron County Heritage Area

 
 
Pinery Road - The Legend Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, August 14, 2012
1. Pinery Road - The Legend Marker
Inscription. "An old Indian legend says that Bearskull Lake is sacred. Any white man who had anything to do with the lake or its vicinity will have everlasting ill fortune."

In 1904, a tornado ripped through this area, toppling the last great stands of virgin pine. The “windfall” in salvageable timber attracted brothers John and David Emerson to the vicinity of Bearskull Lake.

Hauling sawmill machinery, supplies, and logging equipment 25 miles through swamps and forest from Park Falls, they established a sawmill town here in 1905. Work to salvage wind blown timber had just begun when a fast moving forest fire destroyed the mill and new community of “Emerson.”

Come spring, the brothers hauled in larger, more modern sawmill equipment. Emerson was rebuilt. Wood frame homes, to house lumberjacks and their families, lined both sides of Emersonís half mile long main street.

Emerson boasted a school, post office, store, and town hall— but there was no saloon. The Emersons were pious prohibitionists. Intoxicating liquor was not allowed in their town.

Was it curse or coincidence when lightning struck and killed brother John and three members of the Emerson family, while they were fishing near Bearskull Lake in 1908?

The family never recovered from the tragedy.
Pinery Road - The Legend Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, August 14, 2012
2. Pinery Road - The Legend Marker
Photo: Dressed in a fur coat, one of the Emerson brothers supervises logging operations near here in 1908.
The mill and town were soon abandoned and logging operations moved away from Bearskull Lake.
 
Location. 46° 1.653′ N, 90° 4.779′ W. Marker is near Springstead, Wisconsin, in Iron County. Marker is on State Highway 182 7 miles west of State Highway 47-182, on the right when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Park Falls WI 54552, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 10 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Flambeau Trail – Manitowish (approx. 7.9 miles away); Roddis Line – Turtle-Flambeau Dam (approx. 8.2 miles away); Flambeau Trail – Turtle Flambeau Flowage Dam (approx. 8.3 miles away); Lac du Flambeau (approx. 8.7 miles away); Veterans Memorial (approx. 8.8 miles away); Flambeau Trail – Two Ways to Go (approx. 9.3 miles away); Roddis Line – Lake of the Falls (approx. 9.3 miles away); Government Boarding School Boys Dormitory (approx. 9.3 miles away).
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
Pinery Road - The Legend Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, August 14, 2012
3. Pinery Road - The Legend Marker
with Town hall in background.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 315 times since then and 23 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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