In the mid-1980s, we had a cabin on an 80-acre lake not too far from Danbury, Wis. My wife, Judith, and I wanted to be on a larger lake, and we looked throughout northwestern Wisconsin. Eventually there was no more land, and we landed at Lake Superior. We found a cabin — actually a 1950s rambler — in Cornucopia, Wis., whose claim to fame is that it has Wisconsin’s northernmost post office.
Lake Superior is a magical place. Approaching it from miles away, you feel a magnetism that pulls you there and wants you to stay. We didn’t sail or kayak or fish the Apostle Islands, but we liked the lake and our cabin.
We would walk in the woods, canoe in the slough, feed and watch the birds, pick strawberries in nearby Herbster and raspberries at Bayfield, and attend almost every performance at the Big Top Chautauqua. I was interested in local history. During my 1989-90 sabbatical, Judith, our son Eric and I spent the time at our Lake Superior house, and I researched and wrote several articles dealing with the economic history of Cornucopia, which for many years was an important South Shore fishing community.
Eric, who was 16 and home-schooled, wrote a booklet on Cornucopia’s history. Judith, who had worked as an elementary school teacher and earlier a newspaper reporter, was Eric’s teacher and also his editor. Copies of Eric’s booklet were sent to several libraries in Wisconsin and Minnesota. The Wisconsin Historical Society’s library cataloged it as “A Precise History of Cornucopia, Wis.” Several years later, when we found out about the error, the library was informed that the correct title is “A Concise History of Cornucopia, Wis.”
When our son was ready to begin college, we decided that we would sell the Cornucopia house. We sold it in 1992 and used the money to build a rural residence closer to the Twin Cities, where we lived. Now we have only memories of a cabin. And memories of the new house, too, because we moved to Eagan to be closer to our son and his family.
Norman W. Larson, Eagan