Exploring and Documenting the Flambeau Trail and Turtle Portage

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Course Title: Exploring and Documenting the Flambeau Trail and Turtle Portage

Course #19S02

Course fee: $65, early bird discount $55 if registered before April 2nd

Dates: April 16 -3 hours, April 23 _3 hours, April 30 -3 hours, May 7 -3 hours, May 14 -2 hours May 21 –Rain Date as needed.

Time: Varies based on activity, classroom instruction 2:00 pm-4:00 pm, most field instruction 2:00 pm-5:00 pm

Class size: Limited to 12 participants.

Locations: Mercer Library, Mouth of the Montreal River & Oronto Creek, Long Lake & Turtle River

Objectives: Particpants will:

learn historic thinking skills, research methods and document use.

work in collaborative groups.

explore both written and digital historic sources regarding the Flambeau Trail and Turtle Portage.

engage in field work analyzing historic sites (as participants are comfortable).

collaboratively build products that will overview of the historic importance of both the Flambeau   

 Trail and Turtle Portage.

Course Structure:

The course will be given in 5 session and session will vary from 2 to 3 hours (details under “Dates” above) covering the following topics:

Session 1 will be conducted in a classroom setting at Mercer Library and in the field in the community of Mercer. After introductions, specific goals for the course will be agreed upon.  Overview presentation by the instructor including an introduction into research methods. Review a list of products we may choose to create, answer questions and create collaborative groups. Assign and handout readings for next week.  Prepare for walking trip in Mercer by reviewing our areas of focus on Google maps, along with the historic maps identifying both Turtle Portage and the Turtle band of Ojibwa. Walk to Echo Lake and Carow Park respecting private property and discussing logical sites for the village and portage. 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Session 2 will be conducted in a classroom setting at Mercer Library. Discussion and analysis of the readings and images. Ranking documents regarding importance for our project.  Begin to create a timeline regarding the Flambeau Trail and plan how we will communicate the importance of these historic trails. Prepare for our field experience next week, work in collaborative groups on final products and explore carpooling options. Ojibwa guest speaker, Joe Graveen, will present and answer questions regarding native culture, travel, and traditions. 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Session 3 will be in the field at the mouth of the Montreal River and Oronto Creek. We will gather at the parking lot at Superior Falls and travel to the mouth of the river following the old Flambeau Trail.  Exploring the area along Lake Superior we will discuss, the geological features, historic records, and the use of this small area as a base camp when transitioning from Lake Superior to the interior lakes region. Analyze the Great Lakes verses interior lakes ecologies and economics, and how to convey the importance of this site in our final products.  Next, we will travel to Saxon Harbor to evaluate the Oronto Creek connection and evaluate the plausibility of claims of fur trade posts and starting place for the Flambeau Trail. Participants can engage in physical activities as they are comfortable, or pass on the field experiences altogether. Most surfaces are paved or gravel, but Superior Falls has a steep grade toward Lake Superior. Total walking will be less than a mile. Prepare for our field experience next week, work in collaborative groups on final products, explore carpooling options, and plan logistics for boating needs. 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Session 4 will be in the field at Long Lake and/or Long Lake Creek and the Turtle River. If permission can be secured we will review the trail head area on Long Lake for the Flambeau Trail; and/or paddle from Long Lake Creek to the Turtle River just above Echo Lake. During each excursion analysis of historic documentation, will be important as we contextualize these key routes when traveling.   During and after the trip we will evaluate how our experiences in the field will be incorporated in final products. Participants can engage in physical activities as they are comfortable, or pass on the field experiences altogether. Most surfaces are gravel or uneven ground. Total walking will be less than a quarter mile while downstream paddling will be roughly 4 miles. Participants opting out of the field experience will be offered an alternate experience with the instructor at a time and place to be determined mutually. 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Session 5 will take place at Mercer Library in the classroom. Working on the final products in collaborative groups, each group will ultimately share-out progress on each project.  The group will participate in a poster board and post-it note workshop directing the presentation and design of each product. After creating a time line for the formal posting of final products, we will determine the next logical step to continue this research thread and evaluate the course. 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Session 6-Rain Date or flex session due to cancelled sessions.

Requirements: Participants will not have to purchase any books or materials for this course.  Reading will be provided digitally and/or in paper copies. Bringing a laptop computer or other digital device is recommend, but not required.  Nor does a participant need to be proficient in computer and/or internet use. Though the instructor will use the internet and digital media often to teach the class. Home work will consist of reading documents, viewing maps, creating questions and working on one of the final projects with their group.  Working collaborative with a group is required. Understandably, groups will have persons of varying talents and it is only expected that each group do their best collectively to meet the goals of the project. The instructor will help each group and can provide guidance and assistance as needed. Physical requirements are described under the Course Structure above. Participants are NOT required to participate in field activities, but may instead choose to work on course projects at the Mercer Library to advance the goals of the course.

Instructor: Jim Bokern began teaching History at Oconto High School in 1981, and in 1986 he took the initiative to pursue a Master’s Degree in History at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point. His thesis, History and the Primary Canoe Routes of the Six Bands of Chippewa from the Lac Du Flambeau District expanded Bokern’s interests in Native American culture. Bokern moved to a large high school in Marshfield, Wisconsin 1988, teaching AP US History, AP US Government, AP Comparative Government, team teaching with AP English Language and leading the AP program at Marshfield High School.  Bokern’s educational leadership includes past President of Wisconsin Association for Talented and Gifted, past Chairperson of the Wisconsin Advanced Placement Advisory Council, endorsed consultant for the College Board’s Advanced Placement Program, and textbook editor and contributor for numerous publishing companies. Bokern also has lead two archeological surveys on the Manitowish Waters Chain of Lakes, co-developed the Digital Time Traveler Program at the North Lakeland Discovery Center, worked as project historian on two grants with the Lac Du Flambeau Historic Preservation Office, documented the historically significant 6 Pause Portage in Iron County, leads as president of the Manitowish Waters Historical Society, and continues active historic research in the region.

Guest Speaker: William “Joe” Graveen

“I was born and raised in Northern Wisconsin, specifically on the Lac du Flambeau Indian Reservation, and am an enrolled Tribal member of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe.

I am an avid outdoors person, and love the land in which I live on, and have a deep desire to learn about my traditions, culture, and historical impacts that have influenced the present day Northern Wisconsin.

I presently work for the Lac du Flambeau Tribe in the Natural resources department/ Wild rice Cultural Enhancement Program (Wild Rice Technician). Many of my efforts and duties have been identifying historical wild rice waters and restoration of wild rice in these waters. I have also many hours researching the historical events that may have contributed to the lost and decline of wild rice stand/beds in region.

I lived on the East Coast for a period on time in the state of Maine and it was during this time I co-lead canoe trips up into James Bay Ont/Quebec as well as other canoe trips in the state of Maine- Allahgash River Scenic water way.

I have four children who are young adults now with my youngest being 18 years old. I have my significant other for 14 yrs. and 6 grandchildren that are my light and joy.

I am a Voigt task force Rep for lac du Flambeau tribe.

Vice Chair Lac du Flambeau constitution committee.

LDF Tribe Land Use Board member.

LDF Tribe Conservation Code Committee member”