Leo contacted the State Historical Society of Wisconsin with his find, and they undertook the task of cleaning and preserving the dugout canoe. The relic – dubbed the “Cranberry Canoe” – is almost completely intact and estimated to be roughly 150 years old.
On permanent loan from the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, the canoe is nearly 11 feet long and a classic dugout shape. First used by Native Americans, dugout canoes were generally constructed out of a single log, shaped through repeated charring and scraping. Cranberries are native North American fruit and were gathered by Native Americans for use as food, medicine and dye.
Model T Ford
Carl owned two cranberry marshes that were located one mile apart. His cranberries would be ruined if they froze, so he needed to flood the beds to cover the vines and protect them from freezing. At the time, walking was his only form of transportation.
It would take about an hour for the beds to fill with water deep enough to cover the vines. While he waited, Carl would take a nap on a cot he had at each marsh. After the beds were flooded at one marsh, Carl would walk to the other marsh and repeat the process.
Eventually, Carl was able to buy a 1914 Model T truck to help with this cranberry chore. Vintage car buffs will recognize that the truck is actually a Model T touring car that Carl modified. A few years after buying the vehicle, he replaced the hand-crank starter with an electric starter. He also mounted a spotlight on the driver’s side to provide additional light while flooding his beds.
Interactive & Educational Displays
Looking for a fun, hands-on way to test your knowledge about cranberries? Then you’ve come to the right place! Our cranberry museum offers a variety of interactive exhibits such as slide boards, light up displays and a cranberry corralling game. All ages are welcome to test their cranberry skills at the Cranberry Discovery Center.
Taste Test Kitchen & Ice Cream Parlor
A visit to the Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery Center just isn’t complete until you’ve tried some cranberry ice cream or a bakery treat. We feature several flavors of ice cream handcrafted by the family-owned Ranison Ice Cream & Candy.
Our ice cream flavors may include cranberry, cranberry truffle, cranberry cheesecake, chocolate cranberry caramel swirl and more.
Visitors to the Cranberry Discovery Center have the opportunity to eat their treat at a restored 1930s marble soda fountain counter as part of the Discover Center experience to relive earlier days.