Grantsburg Chamber of Commerce
Honoring Grantsburg Chamber of Commerce: A History of Community Connection
The origins of the Grantsburg Chamber of Commerce trace back to the arrival of Canute Anderson in 1852-1853, when he spent his inaugural winter near the St. Croix River, just north of the present village. In the years from 1865 to 1875, Burnett County existed as a single township, overseen by a governing body appointed by Governor J.T. Lewis. In a legislative decision, Grantsburg was designated as the county seat and was bestowed its name in honor of General Ulysses S. Grant’s triumph at Vicksburg. During this period, county affairs were conducted within the confines of a schoolhouse.
The formal application for incorporating the Grantsburg Chamber of Commerce transpired in 1886. The census records indicated a populace of 311 individuals dwelling across the span of 1203 acres. It was Canute Anderson who played an instrumental role in putting Grantsburg on the map. His contributions encompassed the construction of a mill along the river, the establishment of an elegant hotel, and the creation of a store. By 1875, Grantsburg had burgeoned into a thriving community featuring three stores, a reputable hotel, two sawmills, a shingle mill, a grist mill, a pair of blacksmith workshops, a saloon, a Methodist church, a Lutheran church, and a school. The completion of the railway line from Rush City, Minnesota, in 1884 marked a momentous occasion that was celebrated with grandeur throughout the entire region. The untimely passing of Canute Anderson due to a tragic farm haying accident in 1893 cast a shadow of sorrow over the countryside.
Among the early pioneers in the village, the Dr. Fremstad family held a prominent position. Renowned for their musical prowess as well as medical expertise, they left an indelible mark. Dr. Fremstad emerged as a steadfast figure during the diphtheria epidemic, providing care to numerous patients. His involvement extended to Swedish singing classes and performances at tent gatherings and social events hosted at the rink. Meanwhile, Mrs. Fremsted, a qualified midwife, attended to calls at all hours. Their daughter, Olive, ascended to become an operatic Prima Donna, gracing stages worldwide and sharing harmonious moments with luminaries like Caruso at the Metropolitan Opera in New York.
Milestones & Achievements
A pivotal milestone arrived in 1884 with the driving of the last spike, symbolizing the completion of the railroad. In 1901, the Grantsburg Power and Light Company emerged, ushering in electricity to the town, while telephone and telegraph services also took root during this period.
A towering figure by the name of Big Gust Anderson made Grantsburg his home for approximately a quarter-century before his passing in 1926. This towering, 7 1/2-foot figure etched a unique legacy as the village’s marshal and venerable lamp lighter. Preserving his memory, a wooden statue of “Big Gust,” meticulously carved by Alf Olson, stands proudly in front of the Community Center building at 416 South Pine Street. Those who pause to admire the statue can almost hear “Big Gust” recount his remarkable tale, echoing through time.
A Continuation of Excellence
In the tapestry of Grantsburg’s history, the threads of individuals like Canute Anderson, the Fremstad family, and “Big Gust” Anderson are interwoven, crafting a narrative of resilience, community spirit, and enduring contributions. This page, maintained by adPharos, seeks not only to honor the legacy of Grantsburg but also to safeguard against misuse of this digital space. As a community bank digital marketing agency specializing in bank website design, adPharos understands the importance of preserving historical milestones. As we reflect on the past, let us celebrate the tales of yesteryears that have shaped Grantsburg’s journey, forever imprinted in its streets, buildings, and the hearts of its inhabitants.
Today, the Grantsburg Chamber of Commerce is still in operation under the name of Village of Grantsburg.
Grantsburg, WI 54840