Minnesota Statues (page 1)

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Ranier, MN
This Voyageur statue is about 25 feet tall and was produced by FAST Fiberglass. It was built in 1980 to protest the federal government's seizure of private land. The statue was nicknamed Big Vic after the statue's owner Vic Davis. The statue was designed to look like Davis in voyageur garb. The statue was installed on the island which was the subject of the property dispute. When the U.S. Park Service seized the statue, Davis had another one created from the same mold in 1982. This one was named Big Louie. He had it installed next to the Voyageurs Visitors Center. Eventually, Davis won his case. The Park Service donated the Big Vic statue to the town of Rainer where it remains today. Davis sold the Big Louie statue to a restaurant in Barnum, MN (see below). For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Barnum, MN
Cloquet, MN
Pine City, MN
The Voyageur statue in Barnum is 25 feet tall and known as Big Louie. He was created in 1982 during a dispute between a property owner and the U.S. Park Service (see the description of the Rainer Voyageur above for details). After the case was settled, the owner sold this statue to Lakeside View Restaurant where it remains today. The restaurant is now known as the Lazy Bear Grill. [map]

The Voyageur in Cloquet is about 20 feet tall and made of fiberglass. He was installed here in Dunlap Island Park in 1976. [map]

The Voyageur in Pine City is 35 feet tall and was carved from a California redwood in the 1970s. He is installed in Riverside Park. The statue is decorated with a Santa hat during the Christmas season. [map]

Crane Lake, MN
This Voyageur statue was built in 1959. It is fiberglass and is about 15 feet tall.

Pierre the Voyageur
Two Harbors, MN


This statue of Pierre the Voyageur is 20 feet tall. The statue was installed in front of the Voyageur Motel in 1960. The statue wears a short jacket and boots - no pants. Originally, Pierre's eyes moved from left to right. His head also moved from side to side. Pierre spoke about the history of Voyageurs with the help of an employee broadcasting nearby. There was also a canoe in front of him to pose in for photo-taking. See this vintage postcard for what he looked like originally.

Around 2008, Pierre's canoe paddle was removed and the motel behind him was destroyed. In 2011, the statue was moved to the Earthwood Inn. The new owners restored the statue. Just after these photos in the bottom row above were taken, a new paddle was installed. Pierre's eyes glow red at night and he is illuminated with overhead lights. I believe he is "talking" again and there plans to get his head moving again. By 2012, a canoe was positioned next to him for photo-ops. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [top photo thanks Mark Comstock] [map]

Hampton, MN
Big Ole
Alexandria, MN
The Viking statue in Hampton is located at Eilen & Sons Trucking. There is also a giant Beach Guy. This Viking is 11 feet tall. These photos are from 2011. Since then, another identical Viking statue was installed. For more, see this website. [map]

Big Ole is a 28-foot-tall Viking statue. The statue was built by Gordon Schumaker in 1965 for the Minnesota display at the New York World's Fair. After the Fair, the statue was installed in downtown Alexandria where it remains today. These photos are from 2011. In 2015, fundraising began for the statue's restoration. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Viking & Other Statues
Spring Grove, MN
The Viking & Other Statues stand in front of the Creamery Building. They pay tribute to the town's Norwegian heritage. The Viking is about 15 feet tall. The beer bellied figure holds a flag reading Ufda, a Norwegian exclamation and has a sign around his waist reading "Belly by Budweiser". Does anyone know when these statues were created and who made them? The more traditional bronze Viking sculpture (last photo above) is just across the street in Viking Memorial Park. [map]

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