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Crivitz – Gateway to the North


6-24 to 26-2016

Village of Crivitz landscaping

Triangle Park – Waterfall over sign by Loyal Landscaping, 2009

Crivitz Gateway to the North sign

After being Yoopers for a Day, we arrived in Crivitz, WI at about 7:30 PM on the 24th. We are here since this is the place where Al has memories. His family used to have a cabin on Lake Noquebay when he was young and he wanted to see what the town looked like over 40 years later.  Crivitz recreation and a visitor guide can be found here.  See here also.

Crivitz is also well known for their large July 4th celebration. Enjoy their fireworks display!

Crivitz July 4th celebration

  We turned in and were greeted with a beautiful sunrise the next morning just before 6:30.

Crivitz sunrise 6:23 AM on June 25

After taking pictures at the waterfall sign, we had breakfast at the restaurant behind the sign, Charlie’s Island Café. Great food and they open early! We had breakfast there the next morning too, they have a yummy buffet.

Charlie's Island Cafe in Crivitz

Charlie's Island Cafe inside in Crivitz

It was time to explore the town. Right after breakfast we went to take a look at an abandoned farmhouse called “The Gingerbread House” just outside of town.  Apparently it is a photo subject the locals visit often.  We had a beautiful clear sky that morning and it made a beautiful backdrop.

Gingerbread House WM

An abandoned car on the property nearly overgrown.

Abandoned Car at Gingerbread House in Crivitz

Let’s see some of the businesses in downtown Crivitz. See a list of other businesses here.  Here is Soup to Nuts.

Downtown Crivitz

Sharkey’s Floral and Greenhouse

Sharkey's Floral and Greenhouse in Crivitz

Oak Hill Treasures

Oak Hill Treasures

The railroad track crossed here also. There were some cars here partially load with wood, waiting for the engine car to pick them up after loading.

Railroad Cars with wood in Crivitz

Piggly Wiggly and Subway

Piggly Wiggly and Subway in Crivitz

We left Crivitz for a little while and went to nearby Peshtigo to see the Peshtigo Fire Museum since that was also open that day.  We grabbed lunch at the Crivitz BP, they even had some tables to sit at inside.

We stayed at the Capri Motel. The room was nice and clean and large. A word of warning though, bring plenty of cash if you stay here, their Paypal® connection was down and we had to pay $100 in cash for two nights.

Capri Motel in Crivitz

In the afternoon we explored the Crivitz-Stephenson Historical Society Museum.  It was HUGE and contained some other out-buildings aside from the large main museum building.

Crivitz Historical Society Museum description

Crivitz-Stephenson Historical Society Museum

We sure had fun exploring the museum, good work Crivitz-Stephenson Historical Society!  It was time to head to Lake Noquebay Park on the south end of the lake.  It costs $3.00 for the day here. Went down to the shore and saw a lot of activity on the water on this warm summer afternoon.  Summer is fun here!  It has changed a lot in 40 years though, the now Timberline Resort has grown in size and Al did not recognize it from his memories.

Lake Noquebay views in Crivitz

After we enjoyed taking in the view on the lake we enjoyed dinner lakeside at the Timberline Bar and Grill. They had delicious seafood and I had  shrimp, Al had Taco Salad.  Timberline Resort restaurant in Crivitz

This concludes our one day exploring Crivitz.  We learned a lot about the area and it was interesting to Al all the changes that have happened over the years.

Crivitz Watertower

Welcome to Crivitz selfie

 

 

 

 

Tour the Icebreaker Mackinaw Maritime Museum in Mackinaw City


6-23-16

Icebreaker Mackinaw sign

Icebreaker Mackinaw marker

Icebreaker Mackinaw Maritime Museum in Mackinaw City

We finished our day in Mackinaw City by exploring The Icebreaker Mackinaw, a decommissioned Coast Guard ship built to keep an open waterway in the winter.  It is open May through early October, admission is $11 for adults, ages 6-17 are $6. Get your tickets at the end of the pier in the ticket building.  It looks like a buoy.  There is also a ship propeller on display. The marker above is also nearby.

Icebreaker Mackinaw Ticket booth

We began our walk towards the ship, there were informational signs along the way.

Icebreaker information

 Al served in the Navy in the 1980’s, and he informed me that rank and decorations for service are the same in Coast Guard.  Al showed me the decoration he earned during his years of service.

Al's NAVY Medal

We approach the gangway and are welcomed aboard.  The staff are friendly and are there to answer any questions you might have.

Mackinaw gangway

We began with an orientation before our self-guided tour.  We saw a short film about the ship and it’s important role keeping the seaways open during WW II and after. The citizens of Mackinaw City didn’t want this ship to be sitting in a scrapyard after it was decommissioned. They banded together and purchased the ship and converted it into a maritime museum.  We are so glad they did!  The way between levels are essentially ladders, watch your step!

Icebreaker orientation and video

 

Stairway on Icebreaker

 The Ward Room

Ward Room on Icebreaker

Chief Petty Officer Mess

Chief Petty Officer Mess

1st Class Petty Officer’s Lounge

First Class PO Lounge

Battle Lantern

Berthing Crew Quarters for the Women Crew Members

Berthing Quarters on Icebreaker

Berthing Quarters locker

Watch your step!

Door on Icebreaker

If this ship were operating, you would get a pair of ear plugs before entering the Engine Room, our next stop.  Jim told us about how the engine worked.

Ear Plugs and Engine Room sign

Stairway to Engine Room

Engine Room of Icebreaker

Jim on Icebreaker describing engine

The engine room was impressive even silent, we could imagine the power it would have running.  We went back up the ladder to the Main Deck again.  The route is clearly marked with arrowed signs.  Saw this plaque commemorating 50 years of ice breaking on the wall.  Congratulations on a half-century of fine service to the fleet!

50 Years of Ice Breaking

Since I am a cook, the galley was of particular interest to me.  I took a picture through the plexiglass.   There was a small monitor with a video describing kitchen operations. One of the docents answering people’s questions in this area offered to take me inside the kitchen, thanks!  This kitchen is bigger than I expected for being on board a ship, very impressive!

Galley sign

Ship Galley facts

Icebreaker Galley

Galley in operation on Icebreaker

Icebreaker Galley inside

After the galley went out to the deck. we are looking to the former Railroad Dock area of the marina.  On shore is a marker describing it.

Railroad Dock in Mackinaw City

Railroad Dock marker

Now we enter the Enlisted Crew area.

Mess Deck info

Scullery and enlisted crew

Engineering Office

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HALON Storage

Halon Storage

Executive Officer Office

Executive Officer office on Icebreaker

Log Room

Log Room on Icebreaker

Now we head upstairs to the deck and Pilot House.  What a great view up here!

Icebreaker deck

Pilot House on Icebreaker

Inside Pilot House on Icebreaker

And now the view from the deck!  Ferries, freighters and  parasailing all at the same time.  This is a very busy place in the summer!

Parasailing and Mac island

Freighters passing each other

Flag on Ice Breaker

Our tour is at a conclusion.  Allow yourself at least 2 hours to explore the ship, and be sure to pick a memento at the Ship Store.  If you don’t have time to take the tour, you can still stop in the store.

Ship Store sign

We highly recommend coming here for the tour.  We learned a lot and had a great time.  It’s not every day you get to see the inside of a Coast Guard Icebreaker.

Icebreaker Mackinac Museum selfie 2 IMG_2111

UPDATE 8-1-17!

The Icebreaker Mackinaw is in need of a complete repainting to preserve the hull. A Gofundme

account has been set up for donations. Please help if you can!

Redgranite – Home of Wisconsin’s State Rock


1998-2005  4-30-16 and

9-30-16

Welcome to Redgranite

Redgranite Water Tower and Banner

The Village of Redgranite  is located in Waushara County and home to 2,149 residents.  This community has the proud distinction of once having been the state’s main source of Red Granite and became its namesake.  Learn more about the village history here. Now, the community best known for its patriotism and probably the biggest Labor Day celebration in the county.

We will begin our exploration. In the center of downtown is Veteran’s Memorial Park where a monument of red granite proudly stands.  Also one dedicated to all veterans of the community. The Labor Day celebration takes place in this park too.

Veterans Memorial Park in Redgranite

There is a village water pump, dedicated in 2012. You can buy a brick lining the edge with the engraving of your choice.  There was once a three-story yellow schoolhouse on the site of this park.

Redgranite Water Pump

Also a Lions Club Concession building with a beautiful mural inside depicting the quarry in operation.  I joined all the sides together and made it flat.

Redgranite Lions Concession Building and Shelter

Mural at Redgranite's Veterans Memorial Park

Continuing down the street on the same side is the Redgranite Post Office, a sturdy  and attractive building.

redgranite-post-office-wm

King Memorial Park on the corner of Hwy. 73 and Foster St. has a gazebo and Free Little Library. A church used to stand here before a fire destroyed it in 1986. The land was donated by the Bannerman  Granite Company in 1904.

King Memorial park in Redgranite

King Park story in Redgranite

King Memorial Park in Redgranite

Speaking of Bannerman, enjoy a ride on the 7 mile long Bannerman Trail, formerly a railroad track for Chicago and  Northwestern.

Bannerman Trail sign in Redgranite

Redgranite has many businesses to serve you. On the west side is Lucassen’s Sentry grocery store. We remember it was once a Piggly Wiggly in the early 2000’s.  It officially Became a Sentry on March 15, 2016.

Lucassen's Sentry in Redgranite

On the east side of town is a Kwik Trip, the west side has a Shell and Subway inside.

Kwik Trip and Shell gas in Redgranite

We had a delightful lunch at B. R. Diner which has won accolades for cleanliness and delicious food. We both enjoyed a taco salad there for lunch. It has been open since 2000.

B.R. Diner in Redgranite Collage

B.R. Diner Cleanliness Certificate

On previous visits we also enjoyed lunch at the Curve-In Café  just past the Shell. They also have great food.

Curve-In Cafe in Redgranite

A restaurant on the west side called Granite Inn.

(Went out of business October 2016)

Granite Inn in Redgranite

The former restaurant Nut-N-Fancy next to the Post Office also has beautiful stonework. It is now closed, we have seen many businesses open and close in this location.

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Nut-N-Fancy stone exterior in redgranite

Visit are the Redgranite Public Library to learn more about the community.

Redgranite Public Library

The Old Time Machine, Inc.  for custom welding and machining needs.

Old Time Machine Inc in Redgranite

Across the street from the Veterans Memorial Park is Burman’s Card and Gift Shoppe, The Post Office Bar and Mosier’s Sporting Goods. Sorry, these three businesses do not have websites. Burman’s was originally the bank.

Redgranite Businnesses

Get a haircut at Nuance Hair Design.

Nuance Hair Design in Redgranite

Another place to eat are Elmer’s Place.

Elmer's Place in Redgranite

Knock down a few pins at Lambeau Lanes, Red Rock Pub and Pizza,  and Sanicker’s Pub.

Redgranite Businesses 2

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The original Village Hall building next to Lambeau Lanes, currently vacant.  The new building is behind it

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A former business in town, in 1998. A pickle factory.

Ripon Pickle Company Redgranite 1998

We have now reached the famous quarry that made this community in the late 19th century.  Here is an aerial photo, Google Earth.

Aerial of Redgranite quarry

It has changed a lot in the 11 years since our last visit. Most of the trees surrounding the quarry in the late 1990s are now gone and the trash has been cleaned up.

We used to scuba dive in the quarry.   I shot video of one our dives back in 1998. We found a lawn chair, boat, and snowmobile on the bottom.  I hear there is a school bus on the bottom too.

If you decide to go into the quarry to swim or dive, please take caution. It can be a dangerous place, three people have drowned there in 2015 alone.  The water is always cold at depth and it may be as much as 210 feet deep. We stayed under 40 feet and had a great time 🙂

Here is then and now, similar vantage point.

Redgranite Quarry 1998 and 2017

Another current view, including the platform left from the mining days.

Redgranite Quarry 5 panorama platform

The ruins of a building that was part of the quarry operation.

Redgranite ruins

We were back on 9-30-16 to see fall color at the quarry, beautiful!

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redgranite-quarry-wm-20160930_093841

We explored the west side of it this time since we missed that on our April visit.  We went into the woods and made a new discovery, more remnants of the former mining operation! We found this concrete structure, similar to the one on the other side!

concrete-structure-at-redgranite

Al stood next to it for scale, he is 6’3″. It appears to be almost 18 feet high.

al-and-concrete-structure-at-redgranite

Behind this was more to see, three concrete “walls” with doorway cutouts on one end. They were hard to photograph because the are closely surrounded by forest overgrowth.

wall-structures-at-redgranite-img_8715

Here is a side view of one of the walls.

concrete-wall-side-view

Also back there was what appeared to to the remnant of a track where perhaps small cars were leaded with granite that went to the quarry edge.  Just guessing of course.

railroad-tie-at-redgranite-wm-img_8717

And the best artifact of all!  We found a brick mostly buried in the dirt near here.  We extracted it. The brick was manufactured by Langenberg Brick Manufacturing Co. in Stevens Point around 1900 approximately.  Here is a historic photo of the brickyard.

State Historical Society

State Historical Society

Excerpts about the brick company found in Google Books from 100 years ago.

stevens-point-langenberg-location-1907

langenberg-brick-manufacturing-company-info-in-google-books

Their bricks also built the former insane asylum in Marshfield, long since demolished. Learn more about this industry here.

langenberg-brick-found-in-redgranite

Redgranite’s website is very helpful, it has a map of the village pointing out the historical buildings. We used that to help us find them, a great guide!

A word of warning, if you take a picture of the “House of 7 Gables” on 403 Foster Rd, you do it at your own risk. The lady of the house threatened to call the police if you take a picture her house, even though it is legal if you don’t take the picture on the owner’s property.   I will respect her wishes and it won’t be published here. 

The first house built after the quarry business began.  It was built in 1894-5.

18- 306 Foster Rd. First house after quarry industry began

The Bannerman House on 313 Foster Rd. is where the quarry owner Hedley Bannerman lived.

Hedly Bannerman house in Redgranite

On 414 Foster is the Pickett Fence House, there are 1300 pickets in total.

16-Pickett Fence House in Redgranite

 This is old Water Street Jail, built around 1900.

Water Street Jail in Redgranite

St. Mark’s Catholic Church was originally made of wood and built in 1906.  The building was replaced in 1960 and made of stone, the rectory is especially colorful. The prevalence of quarries in the area means many houses and businesses made use of this stone.

St. Mark's Catholic Church and Rectory Stone

The brick building was built between 1904-08 and currently houses Wemmer’s Motorcycle Parts and Repair and Redgranite Laundromat.

Historic Brick building 1904-8 in Redgranite

 

We always enjoy visiting Redgranite 🙂

Thanks for Visiting Redgranite sign

49th Annual Mad City Model Railroad Show and Sale


2-20-16

Alliant Energy Center sign

Alliant Energy Center Exhibition Hall

This was our first time going to this railroad show, cost was $11 at the door. We parked for free one mile away at Olin Park, it would have cost us $7 and it was a beautiful day for a walk anyway.  The major sponsor is The South Central Wisconsin Division National Model Railroad Association Midwest Region.  See the info booklets for the show here.

This building is bigger than it looks, and there were plenty of displays in the hall area. The ticket booths looked like little train ticket counters, cute!

Ticket Booth at Model railroad show

Trains were the main exhibits here, but there was one that stood out from the crowd.   There was an exhibit dedicated to the Late ore freighter Edmund Fitzgerald that sank on November 10, 1975.  There was even a ship bell that kids had fun ringing. Jim Ferguson ran this exhibit.

Edmund Fitzgerald Exhibit at Train Show

Let’s hear the bell!

We went inside and were amazed by the sheer volumes of trains of all sizes. The smallest trains were the size of a glue stick to ones large enough to give people rides. There were two of those! Here is a sample of all of this activity.

We also saw booths from some of the train attractions we have visited before.  The Fennimore Railroad Historical Society Museum, home of the “Dinky” train. Read about our visit here in 2013.

Fennimore Railroad Historic Museum

Fennimore Railroad Museum

Another place we have been to represented here was the North Freedom Mid-Continent Railway Museum. We have enjoyed two rides on their full-sized train, lots of fun!  See more about our visits here. The Autumn train ride is especially exciting.

Mid-Continent Railway Diesel Train

This display is by the Wisconsin Garden Railway Society. We have seen them at two other events. One was Olbrich Botanical Gardens Holiday Express. Also at Janesville’s Rotary Garden Holiday Light Show.

Wisconsin Garden Railway Society

This very impressive display by the Powers Family is a tribute to the circus.  They will be visiting our church St. Peters in August.

Model Circus train at St. Peters

Foster Family Train display at train show

Enjoy a ride on the large circus train that was there too.

Circus Train ride at train show

Many souvenirs were available for purchase too, from t-shirts to train cars and of course, train hats and whistles.

Train hats at train show

An enjoyable morning for any train enthusiast, we are glad we went.

Olbrich Botanical Gardens Holiday Express 2015


 Olbrich Gardens Sign 12-2015

IMG_8535 crop

12-8-15

The last time I attended this event was in 2013, so it was time to see it again. This time Al joined me. Admission is $5 for adults, $3.00 for kids 3-12.  Since we joined during Olbrich Botanical Garden’s GLEAM event in the fall, we had free entry! The inside of the building was so festive, with many poinsettia plants, some of which are for sale. Memberships are also 50% off during this special event.

Poinsettias IMG_8551

Poinsettias at Olbrich IMG_8544

Memberships and concession IMG_8552

We headed down the walkway to the Christmas display, showing our membership card for admittance and hand-stamped.

IMG_8802 crop Holiday Express entry

Greeting us with a train whistle and an “All Aboard!”,  Olbrich volunteer Judy warmly greeted us and had information about upcoming events.

Volunteer IMG_8554

Models trains are by the Wisconsin Garden Railway Society.  The LEGO® displays by the Wisconsin LEGO® Users Group.  The room is beautiful,  this is the right side of the room with one train display, a modern diesel train.

Right side IMG_8641

Diesel Train at Olbrich

A different train is on the left side, and “Iron Horse” steam engine.

Steam Train IMG_8616 Best

Let’s see them in action!

Two members of the Railway Society were there, Dick Jellings and his wife Elaine.  For over 20 years he wore the Colonel Corn costume at the Sun Prairie Corn Fest. Now retired, he enjoys model trains and showing them to the public.  They will be part of the upcoming Mad City Model Railroad Show and Sale on Feb 20-21, 2016.  We plan on going to this fun event!

The LEGO™ displays were quite impressive.  Star Wars fever was rampant even here, with a rebel base display called “Home One”.

Home One Star Wars Display

Katina Cottage Lego

Winter Street Scene

Winter Street Scene IMG_8613

Winter Street Scene IMG_8614

Winter Castle Display

Miller Park Display

Elvenhorse display

In the Bolz Conservatory, the CHOCOLATE: THE BITTER AND THE SWEET exhibit had Cacao trees on display and signs describing the history of chocolate and uses over the millennia.

Chocolate Display sign IMG_8797

A small Cacao tree and pod.

Cacao Tree and pod

Purity of chocolate, white “chocolate” is not chocolate at all!

Chocolate types IMG_8743

Some of the displays.

American Chocolate Pots IMG_8706

Cacao used in Food and Health IMG_8701

Cacao and Chocolate display IMG_8677

We had a great visit to Olbrich and we look forward to returning to their other events in the next year.  We highly recommend  becoming a member. They get many special benefits, including a discount in their gift shop.

Olbrich gift shop IMG_8800

Fall Color Tour 2015 – Holy Hill, Richfield, Jefferson and Home!


October 2015

Due to a warm September, the colors peaked a week or so later than usual.  Our first trip was to Holy Hill Basilica on Monday, October 12. We have not been there during fall’s peak before.  It was Columbus Day so it was quite crowded when we arrived around noon. Holy Hill offers a great view anytime you go. Be sure you pick a good weather day, since they close the tower if there are high winds or other inclement weather.

We climbed up the 128 stairs to the top of the right steeple to take in the countryside colors. They were brilliant!

Holy Hill Green Steeple

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It was just as beautiful from the bottom looking up. We found an especially good view with a horse in someone’s yard.

Holy Hill and Horse

And the view from Erin, we got both points of view here!

Holy Hill from Erin

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A stand of beautiful trees to the right of this view on the road below.

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A beautiful hill we found on the way.

Colorful Hill

Earlier in the morning we went to Richfield Historic and Nature Park, just a few miles from Holy Hill.

Richfield Sign and Fall Colors

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We saw the historic Messer/Mayer Mill. They are raising funds for restoration of the mill.

Richfield Mill marker

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Other views in the park.

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Richfield Park History

Richfield Park cabins

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October 16

We were in Jefferson for a wedding photo shoot but came early to get some fall color pictures. They have some beautiful trees and views here.  This is the river from the bridge.

Rock River Fall Colors in Jefferson

The view on the right side of the bridge, Rotary Park.

Rotary Park and Bridge in Jefferson

Downtown the tree by the clock was looking especially pretty, it was barely leafing out when we visited in May.

City Clock in Jefferson

Jefferson Land Office City Clock

There are many beautiful houses in Jefferson, many of them with beautiful trees setting them off in a blaze of yellow and orange. Some had ivy too, adding a special touch.

Ivy House in Jefferson

House with Yellow Tree in Jefferson

Orange Maple in Jefferson

Historic House and trees in Jefferson

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October 21-30

Finished up the month with color at my workplace grounds and near our home.

Fall Color at Work

Our neighborhood looked especially pretty this year.  Our red maple was really showing off (the one on the left)!  A couple leaves were not so happy about the end of summer.

Our red Maple at home

Lone Green Leaf word balloon not changing color

My favorite view was at the train track that goes by our condo community. The colors were peaking the day I got a picture of the Canada Pacific train that runs from Portage to Madison. Here is some video of that train in Portage.

Fall Train CP to Portage

Quite a beautiful and long autumn this year. One for the books!

Pepin – Birthplace of Laura Ingalls Wilder


Mississippi River Crossing near Pepin WI

9-18-15

We crossed the bridge from Minnesota to Wisconsin from the Minnesota Great River Road and soon we were in Pepin.  This railroad community is a village of 837 on the shores of Lake Pepin (which is really a wide part of the Mississippi River) has many friendly people that we met and enjoyed talking to.  Pepin’s most famous residents were Laura Ingalls Wilder and her family in the late 1860’s-early 1870’s. Her first book “Little House in the Big Woods” takes place here.

IMG_2561Little House in the Big Woods cover

We first had lunch at the open-air Garden Pub and Grille. What a friendly and fun place! Just bundle up when the weather is cool.

Garden Pub and Grill in Pepin

After lunch we went back to the 1870’s with a visit to the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum. She was born in this community in 1867 and they have never forgotten it.  The 2nd weekend in September the town has a Laura Ingalls Wilder Days festival, we had just missed it. Here is a video of the festival from 2012.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum

Museum Collage badge

In front of the museum is a group of pavers engraved with names of people who donated to support it.  Pave the Way is the name of their fundraiser and you can donate here.

We went in and saw a great many displays depicting life in 1800’s.  In the transportation room was a steamboat model that kids could go to the top and pretend to steer it. Boats were especially important for commerce before the railroad came.

Steamboat model at Laura Ingalls Wilder museum

Also a covered wagon which families traveled in as they settled the country. The first mobile home!

Covered Wagon at Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum

Home on wheels sign

Also fishing boats and tackle used in the late 1800’s.   Laura’s father caught fish on Lake Pepin to provide for their family.

Fishing display at Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum

Going Fishing sign

There was also a pearl button industry here too before the invention of plastic.

Pearl buttons and Shells collage

Just behind the Transportation room is the One-Room School room.

One Room Schools sign

School room at Laura Ingalls Wilder museum

The TV in the corner plays a slideshow of what Pepin was like when Laura lived there.  It show photos of her parents Charles and Caroline (who originally from Brookfield, WI!)  Also Grace, Mary and Laura (L-R).

Ingalls Family photos

On the other side of the building were the home life displays and a few family artifacts or friends of the family. Most were contributed by residents in the Pepin community. Home Life displays at Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum

Featured is a coverlet similar to one Almanzo Wilder’s mother might have made on her loom. Also on this table is a tin lantern similar to what Ma (Caroline Ingalls) used when she went out into the winter night and confronted a bear!

Aunt Barry's Double Weave Coverlet

Tin lantern from Illustration

There was also a kitchen display at the museum too.

Kitchen exhibit at Laura museum

Kitchen table at Laura Museum

A sign about Laura in the museum.

Laura sign in Museum

We had a great visit here, it’s worth it to get a gift from their large gift shop. I got this stoneware mug made by Deneen Pottery in St. Paul. What a great memento of our visit here!

Laura Museum Mug

This wasn’t all in Pepin to see. A little further down the road from here is the historic depot and marker dedicated to Laura. It was an actual depot in Pepin, now its a museum. It wasn’t open when we stopped by though.

Pepin Depot

Laura marker in Pepin

Here there was also a marker and anchor honoring  steamboat captain Phil Scheckel.

Phil Scheckel Steamboat Captain in Pepin marker

We also took a look at some of the businesses near the Pepin Marina not far from the museum.  A row of wheel rims made for a nice frame of their downtown. Also this sign.

Downtown Pepin WI

Pepin businesses

Paul and Fran’s Grocery, LLC reminded me of an old-time general store.  The one we really enjoyed visiting was the shop next to it, T. & C. Latané.  They specialize in custom-work in wrought iron, tin and wood. You don’t see many places like that anymore. Learn more from another visitor here.

Paul and Fran's Grocery LLC and T. & C. Latane

T & C Latane card

The ambiance was just as warm inside, including the owners Tom and Catherine. It turns out she also narrated the slide show we saw at the Laura museum too! Stop in if you would like quality work done by people, not a machine. I got a squirrel cookie cutter, you don’t find those everywhere!

T. and C. Latane store inside

Squirrel Cookie Cutter from Latane

We had to take a look at the Marina too. Train tracks cross the marina entrance, there was a lot of train activity today.  You could look across the river and see the cars on the Minnesota side.

Train going through Pepin

Pepin Marina

You could see darker clouds approaching and knew the rain was about to return. We made our way north to the final Pepin point of interest, the wayside making the cabin location where Laura was born.  There is a marker there also. The rain had also started by the time we arrived.

Little House Wayside

Little House Wayside marker

Ingalls Cabin at Wayside

You could go inside too.

Laura wayside cabin inside

We take our leave of the Little House at the wayside steeped in the history of this community that played a part in the experiences of our favorite pioneer lady, Laura Ingalls Wilder! After we got back on the Great River Road, we saw a Lake Pepin marker.

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Lake Pepin Marker