“Cumberland: The Island City,” was published recently by Brent T. Peterson, historian and executive director of the Washington County Historical Society in Stillwater, Minnesota, as part of the Images of America series from Arcadia Publishing. 

The book features more than 120 pages of historic, high quality photos, ranging from the lumbering era to community landmarks to lake life and even “myths and legends.”

Cumberland’s origins are detailed in the book. The growth and movements of businesses from Louie’s Finer Meats to 3M are well documented.  

Photos of people are frequent, and many of the people are identified—a challenge when working with old photos. 

There are priceless scenes of Rutabaga Fest from over the years as well as school activities and much more. 

The “Myths and Legends” chapter is naturally fascinating. It documents  some Native American lore and the drowning of a circus elephant in Beaver Dam Lake. 

Peterson, who has also published an Images of America book on Stillwater, Minnesota, states in the introduction that he has been coming to a family cabin on Big Dummy Lake for years. “This book could not have happened if I was not lucky enough to have parents and grandparents wise enough to purchase a summer lake cabin in the Cumberland community. The summers spent there with family and friends made me, and our entire family realize what a special place Cumberland is,” he wrote

According to Arcadia Publishing, “Images of America is an ambitious collection of chronicles that accurately capture the essence of what gives each American small town, neighborhood, and downtown its unique flavor. Each one is penned by a seasoned local expert and features hundreds of vintage images, local memories, personal stories, and unique points of view in regard to a variety of iconic events.”

The book is available online and in local book stores at a cover price of $21.99.

(Copyright © 2020 APG Media)

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