Volume One Special Coverage: Pulling Together While Staying Apart


Thanks for Asking |
December 24 2009

What are the top 5 celebrity appearances in the Valley?

Frank Smoot

There are two houses on East Madison that appear to be old stores, 1542 and 1570. Any info on what they used to be?
    Thanks for asking. The first place you mention (several street addresses over the decades for the same location) was Star Bottling Works – soda pop. Joseph Evans, who I think was proprietor, owner, and worker (chief bottle washer, you might say), lived next door in the pretty Queen Anne, now 1558. He died in the early 1940s, also when the Bottlery closed. (Coincidence? I think not.) Far as I can tell, the one on the corner of Madison and Holm (now 1570, as you note), which converted into apartments about 1967, has always been residential, even though it looks exactly like an old store. I know; I can’t believe it either.

Can you tell me about the house on Bellevue Avenue that used to be a church?
    I can, and I did, and Volume One has it archived online.

    Speaking of the internet, you may have heard that V1 held a web-a-thon. Along with much other foolishness, we answered a few questions “live” through wizardry. A couple of inquiries for those who missed it (dolled up a little):

What are the top 5 celebrity appearances in the Valley?
    Our summer Jams and Fests have brought scads here, including Jon Bon Jovi weirdly headlining at Country Jam and – I’m told – Poison stopping in at the Harding Avenue SuperAmerica. However, some of my favorite latter-day stories don’t involve our festival fever. Back when they were monster-rockers and not airy balladeers, Jefferson Airplane played UWEC’s Zorn Arena May 1970. It’s even possible Airplaners Grace Slick and Paul Kantner’s girl China was conceived in Eau Claire – certainly on that tour around that time. In one of those When-Worlds-Collide memory makers, shock-rockers Wendy O. Williams & the Plasmatics played John Menard’s Old Mill Expo Center. I think this was 1981, on the same tour Milwaukee police arrested her for lewdness. Many famous folks have played The Joynt, but I’m told Louden Wainwright III (Dead Skunk in the Middle of the Road) stopped in strictly for a drink. Some locals beat-down the Insane Clown Posse on Water Street in 2001 – a double appearance since Shaggy 2 Dope then appeared in Circuit Court to pay a $396 fine. OK, one from the Fests: I was told Tanya Tucker gave a $100 tip at Shakey’s Pizza (Shanghai Bistro now, same building).

Who’s the most famous person buried in the valley?
    Well, Jacob Leinenkugel is buried in Hope Cemetery, Chippewa Falls, and he’s pretty famous. Dr. Walter Crocker (of the Caddie Woodlawn books) lies in Evergreen Cemetery just off Highway 25 near Dunnville. But for my money, the most famous person whose marker lies anywhere nearby is Chief Buffalo, Ke-che-waish-ke. Principal leader of the Lake Superior Ojibwe for 50 years, Buffalo was a signatory to six treaties between the Ojibwe and the United States; led the successful resistance against removal from Ojibwe ancestral lands by securing permanent reservations – Lac Courte Oreilles, Lac du Flambeau, Bad River, Red Cliff – a feat many Indian Nations did not accomplish; and, led his people through the Sandy Lake Tragedy (on the same order, although not as famous, as the Cherokee Trail of Tears). He journeyed to Washington by birchbark canoe (at 93!) to negotiate with President Fillmore. He’s buried at the Catholic Indian Cemetery at La Pointe.

Lasker Jewelers
Lasker Jewelers

Pulling Together Partners

The following organizations are currently supporting Volume One’s work in the community during the pandemic:

Lasker Jewelers

L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library, Eau Claire

Downtown Eau Claire Inc DECI

University of Wisconsin Eau Claire

Pablo Group

Wisconsin Independent Network

Middle West Management

Bon Iver

Royal Credit Union

Silver Spring

Evergreen Surgical

Charter Bank

The Murty Henriksen Family

The Larry and Marie Past Family

The Dan and Kerry Kincaid Family

Anton and Rae Schilling-Smets

Brady and Jeanne Foust

If your organization is interested in supporting Volume One during this difficult time, nick@volumeone.orgcontact us.