Legend of Paul Bunyan

Legend of Paul Bunyan (HM132P)

Location: Eau Claire, WI 54703 Eau Claire County
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Country: United States of America
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N 44° 48.604', W 91° 31.064'

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The legend of Paul Bunyan is the creation of lumberjacks from Canada to the United States and from Maine to the Pacific Northwest. It probably had its roots in a real person. There was a soldier, named Paul Bunyan, who fought with Papineau in the French-Canadian revolt of 1837. This Paul Bunyan was a fierce soldier, taller and stronger than most and he did own a lumber business after his military career. Because he was a fair and highly respected leader, stories began to be told about him in the logging camps of Canada.

Lumberjacks in the U.S.A., many of whom came down from Canada, enjoyed a good yarn. The tales about Paul Bunyan moved westward with them from Maine to the Pacific coast along with the constant search for new stands of timber. The tall tales of Paul and Babe, his big blue ox, grew constantly as lumberjacks competed to one-up the previous yarn spinner and tell an even more fantastic tale during the long winter evenings in the bunkhouse. Often the tales took on certain regional details like Paul's fingerprints forming the Finger Lakes of upstate New York, or footprints of his blue ox, Babe, filling with water all over Minnesota to form the 10,000 lakes or Paul's careless dragging of his gigantic axe forming the Grand Canyon. It didn't take long for the "jawin" lumberjacks to expand on the many stories of Paul Bunyan's fabled logging exploits. Soon a whole cast of characters was added. Sourdough Sam was busy strapping bacon squares to the feet of his cook's helpers so they could skate around on Paul's gigantic flapjack griddle greasing it for the many batches of cakes it took to feed the Paul Bunyan crew. Swede Ole, the blacksmith, was hammering out over-sized shoes for Babe's mighty hoofs and Johnny Ink slinger was keeping complete records of the entire goings on in the camp. All the while old Paul was hitchin up Babe to the Mississippi river to stretch and straighten some snaky curves that were "jammin" up the log flow. The amazing feats of Paul and his crew are well known over the northern portion of America. Many localities claim to be Paul's birthplace or proclaim themselves as the site of his famous lumber camp in order to identify with the broad shouldered, "can do" image of this folk icon. What must be remembered is that Paul's Tall Tales are large enough for all to share.

Historical information on the podiums in Carson Park provided courtesy of the Chippewa Valley Museum and the Paul Bunyan Logging Camp. Maps of the six podium locations in the park are available at both institutions.

Podium placement made possible by the Paul Bunyan Logging Camp directors, in cooperation with the City of Eau Claire Park Department, and the Kiwanis Club of Eau Claire, Inc. (Thursday Noon Club) which has made the Paul Bunyan Logging Camp a major project each year since 1934.
HM NumberHM132P
Placed ByThe Paul Bunyan Logging Camp directors; the City of Eau Claire Park Department; the Kiwanis Club of Eau Claire, Inc
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, October 25th, 2014 at 6:30am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)15T E 617210 N 4962920
Decimal Degrees44.81006667, -91.51773333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 44° 48.604', W 91° 31.064'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds44° 48' 36.24" N, 91° 31' 3.84" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)715
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 200-298 Carson Park Dr, Eau Claire WI 54703, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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