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Bemidji links its early history to that of Shay-now-ish-kung, or Chief Bemidji, who lived with his family on the shores of the lovely lake bearing his name. After the Carson brothers opened their trading post in 1888, logging flourished and lumber camps boomed. Bemidji was incorporated in 1896, and the railroad reached the town in 1898. Hotels, businesses, and saloons mushroomed near the railroad tracks. Saloons and a brisk nightlife kept Bemidji in the news until federal agent W.E. "Pussyfoot" Johnson and his deputies closed the saloons and made it a more respectable place to live. Early settlers took advantage of the beautiful shoreline to develop summer hotels and parks. Kodak reported that the spot where the statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox stand is the second-most-photographed tourist attraction in the United States.
ISBN: 9780738599793
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Arcadia Publishing
State: Minnesota
Series: Images of America
Images: 218
Pages: 128
Dimensions: 6.5 (w) x 9.25 (h)
These images have all been selected from the extensive photographic archives of the Beltrami County Historical Society. Local historian Cecelia Wattles McKeig has written several other books on local topics and communities and shares some of the historical facts about her hometown in Images of America: Bemidji. Through these images and narration, one can grasp why this logging town survived and became one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Midwest.