Thursday, June 28, 2012

Koochiching County Fire Tower

Minnesota Historical Society
Fire tower in Koochiching County Date:  ca. 1920
by permission

The NGS datasheet for SOO includes a 1913 description of a tower built by "fire rangers." Does that provide any clues about the tower in the photo?

The station is located at 48 37 41.53870(N) 094 06 13.09827(W):

STATION DESCRIPTION
DESCRIBED BY INTERNATIONAL BOUNDARY COMMISSION 1913 (CHS)
ABOUT 1 MILE SOUTH OF RAINY RIVER AT BIRCHDALE, MINN.  THE STATION IS NEAR THE SOUTHEAST CORNER OF SECTION 33, TOWNSHIP 160 NORTH, RANGE 27 WEST, AND IS ABOUT 200 METERS WEST OF A NORTH - AND - SOUTH ROAD, AND 200 METERS NORTH OF AN EAST - AND - WEST ROAD.  A 50 - FOOT TOWER BUILT BY FIRE RANGERS IS ON A ROCK RIDGE ABOUT 150 METERS SOUTH OF THE STATION.

150 meters south of the station puts the tower just off present Highway 11 in Birchdale in Koochiching County.  The tower in the photo above is around 50 feet tall. Was it the tower built by fire rangers?



Recall that in 1913 most towers were being built of wood.