"History of Lincoln, Oneida, and Vilas Counties Wisconsin"

Compiled by George O.Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others. Printed in 1924 by H.C.Cooper. Jr. & Co., Minneapoli-Winona MN. ill. 787 pages. The first two hundred pages are history of the three counties, the remainder of the book is biographies.


Colby, Edwin L. proprietor of Birchwood Lodge on Garth Lake, in the town of Hazelhurst, Oneida County, was born at McHenry, Ill., Sept. 2, 1869, son of John B. and Mary (LESTER) COLBY. The mother is now deceased and the father is residing at Clifton, Ill. Edwin L. was educated at Clifton, graduating from the high school there with the class of 1887, and he then became associated with his father in the hardware business, remaining in this connection until they closed out their business in 1897. He then went to Chicago and engaged in furnace installation and tin work contracting, operating in this line until 1917, when he came to Hazelhurst and purchased his present resort property from Jack SCHWARTZ. There were then but three cottages on the site; from this beginning, however, Mr. COLBY has built up a fine summer resort. He erected a main lodge 48x80 feet in dimensions, constructed of tamarack logs and having a large screened porch across the front; he has also completed five more cottages, so that the place can accomodate 50 or 60 people comfortably, and he has just finished the erection of a combined recreation hall and boathouse, extending out over the lake and providing a place of entertainment for the guests, where they may spend an evening in dancing amid surroundings of elfin beauty. Mr. COLBY has constructed all the tables, chairs, and settees with which the buildings are furnished, with his own hands, using selected tamarack and cherry in fashioning these articles and achieving a very artistic effect. A fleet of ten rowboats and two canoes are operated in conjunction with the resort; tennis courts are provided, and a fine herd of saddle horses and ponies for children and adults are kept on hand; in fact no feature has been overlooked in making Birchwood one of the finest resorts in this section of the country. Fine gardens, dairy, and poultry yard provide fresh country food for the tables, and all the cooking is personally supervised by Mrs. COLBY; these features have combined to make the cuisine at Birchwood a thing of fame. Muskellunge, bass, pike, and trout abound in the waters about the resort, and the nimrod will find game of every description in the woods close by. Birchwood Lodge, located in a natural paradise and offering all the service and conveniences of a modern hostelry, leaves nothing to be desired as a place to spend a vacation of real pleasure. Mr. COLBY was married in Clifton, Ill., Nov. 11, 1891, to Miss Jessie VANDRUFF. Three children, as follows, have been born to Mr. and Mrs. COLBY: Lillian, who is now Mrs. Vincent VEENSCHOTEN of Erie, Pa.; Edwin G., who is operating a fox farm near Hazelhurst; and Marian, now a student in the University of Wisconsin.

Transcribed by Susan Swanson, from pages 269 (with picture), History of Lincoln, Oneida and Vilas Counties Wisconsin; Compiled by George O. Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others 1924, H. C. Cooper, Jr. & Co.

You are our    [an error occurred while processing this directive]    Visitor since 4 Feb 2004--Thanks for Stopping By.

© Copyright: All files on this website are protected by the US Copyright Law, Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, they are not to be copied or altered in any way for commercial use. Individuals may copy the information for their personal use. WIGenWeb Oneida and Vilas County Coordinator Judy Groh.