“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Maplewood in Ramsey County, Minnesota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)

Destination Lake Phalen

Destination Lake Phalen marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By McGhiever, June 5, 2019
1. Destination Lake Phalen marker
Inscription.  Lake Phalen has long been a magnet for people looking for a place to gather and connect with nature. As early as 1879, the Phalen Chain of Lakes was advertised as a resort area with excellent boating, fishing and hunting opportunities. The park was established in 1894.

The Chain of Lakes is Born:
Glaciers that moved through this area over the last 2.58 million years left behind submerged river valleys and dramatically changing landscapes. The last time they passed through, about 20,000 years ago, the glacier left a chain of lakes including Lake Phalen in an old river valley where the St. Croix River used to be located.

Dakota Water Way:
For many years, the Dakota traveled from the Mississippi through a creek to Lake Phalen. The Phalen Chain of Lakes offered prime hunting and fishing grounds to these Native Americans.

Drink Up!
In 1869 the St. Paul Water Company began supplying water from the lake for homes and businesses in St. Paul. The lake continued to be a primary source of city water through 1913.

Street Car Stop:
A streetcar station on the west side of the lake, built

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in 1894, increased visitors to the park which spurred on canoe rentals, beach houses, pavilions and bandstands.

Canoeing in the Lagoon:
In the early 1920s park visitors lounged in rented canoes in the island lagoon. It was a popular site to listen to music (played on portable phonographs) while paddling.

Tarzan Comes to Lake Phalen:
A Phalen Beach crowd watches a performance in 1931 by Olympic swim champion Johnny Weissmuller, star of Tarzan movies.

Linke's Landing:
Linke's Landing was a familiar landmark and popular launching site for hunting, fishing, swimming and rowing in the early 1900s.

Bringing Bulrush Back:
The bulrush, an important native plant species, was removed from Lake Phalen by the 1940s. Restoration efforts have brought the bulrush back.

Coming Full Circle:
Since the early 1900s, the Lake Phalen shoreline has been drastically altered; the lake bottom dredged, native plants removed and wetlands filled. These practices destroyed fish and wildlife habitat and caused erosion. In 2001, the community came together to restore the shoreline to a more natural state.

Erected by Saint Paul Parks and Recreation, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in

Destination Lake Phalen marker on the edge of the paved path around the lake image. Click for full size.
Photographed By McGhiever, June 19, 2019
2. Destination Lake Phalen marker on the edge of the paved path around the lake
these topic lists: EntertainmentEnvironmentParks & Recreational Areas. A significant historical year for this entry is 1879.
Location. 44° 59.738′ N, 93° 3.569′ W. Marker is in Maplewood, Minnesota, in Ramsey County. Marker is on E. Shore Drive, on the left when traveling west. Marker is in front of a wooden observation platform just off the parking lot at the northwest end of Lake Phalen. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Saint Paul MN 55109, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Frost Avenue (approx. 0.2 miles away); Phalen Regional Park Waterfall (approx. 0.2 miles away); Tallest Ice Structure in History (approx. 0.4 miles away); In Memory of Civilian Conservation Corps Personnel (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Shops at Gladstone (approx. 0.6 miles away); Water: A Well Needed Resource (approx. 0.6 miles away); A History of Change (approx. 0.6 miles away); History in Depth (approx. 0.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Maplewood.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 23, 2019. It was originally submitted on June 21, 2019, by McGhiever of St Paul, Minnesota. This page has been viewed 750 times since then and 405 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on June 21, 2019, by McGhiever of St Paul, Minnesota. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 9, 2023