Tomahawk Area Historical Society seeking new volunteers at museums
Greeters have opportunity to learn about local history, share memories
By Dixie Zastrow
Tomahawk Area Historical Society
TOMAHAWK – The Tomahawk Area Historical Society has been the proud caretaker of our unique history for over 30 years.
Our mission is to collect, share and preserve that history, which we’ve done through various venues. Our constant one has been exhibiting artifacts, photographs and information at our two museums.
Have you visited them?
The first one was the log cabin, which was situated on the N. Tomahawk Ave. boulevard, serving for decades as an office and tourist information center for the area. It was rescued from demolition in 1986 and moved to its current site at E. Washington Ave., where it became our first historical museum. It was at that time that residents established the Tomahawk Area Historical Society.
In 2000, when the school district’s office moved from the city’s first school building across the street, the society acquired the building, restored it and created the second museum. They are open mid-June through mid-August every summer. Society members and volunteers serve as docents for two-hour shifts, greeting visitors.
Early logging and farming artifacts and information are presented in the log cabin, while the school building has a replica of a one-room rural school, which were prevalent years ago, a great military room dedicated to area veterans, a turn-of-the century kitchen and many interesting pieces of our history. Several books with a treasure-trove of information researched by Elaine Koth may be viewed, as well as several books which have been published by our members.
Through the years, society members have presented dinner theater events recognizing pieces of our history, such as the German, Irish and French ethnic groups and early bank robbery. We’ve also held TomaWalks with folks taking on the character of early business owners and telling their stories to groups as they strolled the main street.
More recently, we’ve presented events about the early CCC days, car dealerships and gas stations and the Lake Ice Bear.
The reason for this article is to say that, sadly, in the past few years we’ve lost many members and volunteers due to health issues, etc. It is important to us that we are able to continue to operate our museums, so we are in need of folks to volunteer to help us share our history as docents, greeting visitors for a two-hour shift. We feel there are retired teachers and others, folks who’ve moved back to Tomahawk or are new to the area, that would enjoy being a part of our mission.
It isn’t necessary to know all about our history. As you volunteer for a couple of hours “as a greeter,” you have the opportunity to learn about the history of the area, as well as renew and share your memories.
I would like to introduce our board of directors to you. They are Terry Derleth, Gary Hoffman, Gordy Lovsletten, Gail Marquardt, Jan Nelson, Pat Pietila, Sue Schoone, Tom Seavey, Bill Sparr, Ken Urso, Kay Kissinger Wolf and Dixie Zastrow.
We ask that you consider volunteering for us. If interested, please call Pat at 715-966-4801.
Note from the Tomahawk Area Historical Society: Dixie Zastrow has retired from the Presidency of the Tomahawk Area Historical Society due to cancer. Board member Patricia “Pat” Pietila was nominated and has accepted to take over the Presidency.