Caught In Time Northwoods Vacationland Album
Graveyard of the Chippewa Flowage, page 2
The Graveyard of
Many people don't know this, but the wonderful, wildnerness
lake that is Chippewa Flowage was created by men. In the 1920's
the Winter Dam was built by the local power company. This caused
the land to be flooded, including the town of Post and much of
the Native American settlement in the area. Everyone was warned
in advance so noone was killed by this event (to my knowledge)
but it was a tragedy for the Native Americans who originally
settled there. Along with the destruction of many of their food
sources (wild rice and cranberries), they had many ancestors
buried there. The power company offered to help move graves and
many were, yet some were not. After the flood, bones and remains
of many of the ancestors washed up onto shore creating many generations
of pain for the local Native Americans. The photos on this page
were taken on one of the many islands of the Big Chip. This particular
island (what used to be just a hill in the area before the flood)
used to house a church (I think Catholic...) and a small graveyard.
Many graves are empty because those were the remains that were
relocated prior to the flood. Two graves remain, however, those
of Joe Roy and Private Charles Jockey. There is a church foundation
and cross remaining as well. It's a tranquil, beautiful place.
If you happen to stumble across it on your trip through the Chip,
please treat it with respect, like all of the other people who
have visited it thus far.
There is a book called "Pacwawong --Where the River Bends"
that is sold in the bookstore on the mainstreet of Hayward. This
book tells the painful story of the birth of the Chippewa Flowage
and is a must read for anyone who enjoys and appreciates this
The dark oblong
areas in this photo are empty graves.
There are many on this island.
This is the "road"
to the church.
Someone, probably the DNR, laid birch trees to
form a path to the location of the church.
of Joe Roy in the distance.
open, empty grave.
left by visitors: native and non-native people alike have paid
their respects here.