And This Is A Real Fish Story
Five-Pound Bass Leaps a Suicidal Episode. It Happened at Lake Hallie and is Told by Descendants of Geo. Washington.
Eau Claire Leader | September 8, 1909
What do you know about that? A five-pound bass voluntarily jumps into a boat at Lake Hallie, and allows itself to be caught! Sounds odd, doesn’t it? But it’s gospel truth. Monday evening, while Charles W. Lincoln, a barber at 614 Water Street, was rowing with a friend, this eccentric five-pound bass unpremeditatingly committed suicide.
Mr. Lincoln had been quietly rowing along, neither he nor his friend were talking. Everything was still. Suddenly, a splash and a bang startled the rowers. Mr. Lincoln quickly looked around and saw the fish struggling under the seat in the front end of the boat. After a tussle he captured it, and brought it to shore.
A great number of people at Electric Park examined the fish and were interested by the story. Now, this may sound rather like a modern day fish fact, but ask any real enthusiast, ask any old hunter and fisher who frequents the northern woods for big game, and they will tell you that fish, at night time often jump into boats! The fish are attracted by some glittering object, a jeweled pin, a liver cigar case, a pair of gold rimmed glasses, or a sparkling diamond ring. There’s the proof, and we positively believe in Mr. Lincoln’s story.
Chad’s Take – A whopper of a story.
I happen to know many people who love to fish. A couple of my uncles are avid fisherman, and they have been known to throw around a few lures in Lake Hallie. In fact, over the years I have been privy to quite a few humorous fishing stories form both friends and family that all took place at Lake Hallie. Usually these misadventures contain some surprisingly oddball incident that, if nothing else, makes an interesting tale to tell at one of the many nearby Lake Hallie saloons. It is with this background history that the above story does not strike me as overly odd. I have come across many accounts of fish voluntarily jumping into the boats of surprised anglers.
Yet what really caught my attention in this article was the fact that the men brought their easily obtained fish down to the Electric Park (Now Lake Hallie Park) to show it to curious sightseers. The Electric Park was an amusement park that was located right next to Lake Hallie. During 1916, residents could grab a round trip train ride from Chippewa Falls to Electric Park for 11 cents. Those in Eau Claire could ride to the park and back for only a dime. Unfortunately the park closed up shop when the rail stopped its routes. But for many years you could simply hop the train and head out to Electric Park to ride the Ferris wheel, play some ball, enjoy some food, see suicidal fish, and maybe even come face to face with one of the traveling circus freaks, but these are stories best told in the Lake Hallie saloons.
Keep an eye out…
Usually, when we need to make fun of the things that rile up local citizens, our go-to joke is something to do with sidewalk ordinances. Well, the City of Eau Claire seems to be taking all that riled-up-ness seriously. They’re creating a “sidewalk map” detailing … wait for it … the city’s sidewalks. It’ll show every single sidewalk we have, as well as where we plan on building more. Planners say the map will help in a number of areas. First off, it’ll help us to know what destinations we can actually get to on foot. Secondly, it’ll warn homeowners about big slabs of concrete coming their way. And lastly, it’ll help the city see where more walkways are needed. From WEAU.com …
- Senior Planner Pat Ivory says the map makes it very clear where sidewalks are needed; for example, across from Oakwood Mall where the sidewalk literally ends. But, a city councilman says it could also stop sidewalk wars in the future.
- "Sidewalks are one of the more interesting things that the city council deals with, depending on your point of view," says City Council Vice President Dave Duax. …
- He hopes the map will help prepare homeowners when one could be coming.
- "What they don't like is when they just planted that tree a year ago, then along comes the city and says 'we're putting a sidewalk in this year.' and they go 'wait a minute!'" Duax says.
Wait a minute! I’m not sure a map will make homeowners any less pissed off about changes to their landscaping, even if they can plan around it in advance. But if they can make the map readily available to the public, it might get more people walking. As far as this being "one of the more interesting things that the city council deals with" ... um. Heh.
Working with the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission, planners have a draft of the map which you can download here (PDF). Check it out.
A big shout out to our homie James Kust – the UWEC student who won $100 in Topper’s Pizza by stopping by Volume One’s tent at the Campus Community Connection event yesterday. As you can see, James lives a pretty hardcore life, and we can only assume that he’ll be enjoying his pizza in a fairly hardcore manner. Congrats, James.
People, this is what connecting students to the greater Eau Claire community is all about.