History & Antiques-Visit the Lake of the Woods Historical Society
History and Antiques are great items to add to your vacation destination this summer. Come to Lake of the Woods and visit our wonderful Lake of the Woods Historical Society. Lake of the Woods County Historical Society is located in Baudette, MN at 119 8th Ave SE. It is on the east end of town and has a beautiful building to store all of its history and artifacts from the ages past. Lindsay Marshall is our current director and she is a tremendous historian. She has worked within the facility arranging and rearranging displays to enhance the visitor’s eye. She has definitely captured the flavor of the area.
Ms. Marshall is exited to share that the Museum will be opening May 10th with regular hours of Monday – Friday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Saturdays 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. The Museum will be following COVID-19 policy and masks will be required when you’re inside.
The Museum took advantage of the slower 2020 season, as well as the winter months to get some collections work accomplished. There is so much history already recorded with the Historical Society but much more is added throughout the year. Donations keep coming from past history and displays are continually being updated.
The History of Lake of the Woods County is rich as pioneers moved in to the forest areas around and started whittling out places to live and raise families. Early settlers established the town of Baudette and businesses started arriving. Because of the location of the town along the Rainy River, logging became a very profitable business. This was the primary source of income for the area until the Fire of 1910 wiped out the towns of Baudette and Spooner. The Historical Society has a great amount of information about this historical event as well.
Of course, fishing is a big part of the history of Lake of the Woods. It was excellent then and now so commercial fishing became a fruitful industry. Because of the fishing, a local resident, who was also a chemist, discovered medicinal qualities that the fish had and established a fruitful business called Reid Rowell Laboratories. Although the company has changed names many times, there is still a strong pharmaceutical company still in Baudette known now as ANI Pharaceuticals
Visiting the local museum with its superb history is a great way to keep that very history alive and teach the younger generation as well. The museum has written a number of books about the area that are for sale at the museum. Pioneers first settled in the forest area east and south of Baudette. Today visitors are encouraged to visit those areas and see the sites of past homesteads and Faunce Tower.
CCC camps were a part of the history here and the past camp Is now occupied by the DNR. Roads travel through the forest and great displays of pine adorn the landscape. If those trees could talk, they would tell a story about past history as well.
At one time the Laurel Indians inhabited the land here and used the famous sturgeon that lives in the Rainy River for their food supply and also used them for fuel. You’ll find good information on that era as well at the Museum. See the following video of a gentleman who loves to explore and loves history.
Another historical sight in Baudette is the Depot. This depot and its history has been preserved by a committed group of people in the area who have completely restored the building and the history it contains. Take a walking tour through the building and learn about the tremendous history of the railroad and the part it has played in this north country.
So… come fishing, stay at one of our fabulous resorts, catch fish, dine at fine restaurants and explore the history that makes this northland a treasure.
For more information see our website at: www.lakeofthewoodsmn.com
Also see the Historical Society Website at: www.facebook.com/Lake-of-the-Woods-County-Historical-Society-399575353425951 or www.lakeofthewoodshistoricalsociety.com