Devil's Lake - The People

William Canfield

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  Canfield at age 17 in 1936.

Canfield at age 17 in 1936.

  Canfield at age 80 in 1899.

Canfield at age 80 in 1899.

Canfield (1819-1913 was a civil engineer and the first surveyor of Sauk County. Canfield is sometimes called the first historian of Sauk County. He lived at Skillet Creek and later moved to West Baraboo. Canfield helped establish the "Old Settlers Association." In 1903 Canfield purchased 3 acres of land at Devil's Lake and built a cabin. The cabin was to be the Old Settlers Association meeting house but the location proved to be impractical. The cabin was located near the present day Cottage Lane. The property changed hands after Canfield's death and was acquired by the state in 1943.

Louis Claude

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An early settler of Devils Lake, Louis Claude built a large English manor house where the present North Shore Picnic Ground is located.

Kenneth I. Lange

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Kenneth I. Lange was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and received a B.S. in Education from the University of Wisconsin in 1956 and a M.S. in Zoology from the University of Arizona in 1958. After working for the Smithsonian Institution for a number of years, he returned to Wisconsin in 1966 as the Naturalist at Devil’s Lake State Park, a position which he held until his retirement in 1996. At Devil’s Lake State Park, he was soon drawn into the human history of the area. This interest resulted in two books: A Lake Where Spirits Live: a human history of the Midwest's most popular park, which was first published in 1975 and is now in its third edition, A County Called Sauk, which was first published in 1976 as the bicentennial project of the Sauk County Historical Society; Lange received a Local History Award of Meriti from the State Historical Society of Wisconsin for these books. With Michael J. Mossman, he coauthored a study of the breeding birds of the Baraboo Hills, and has also written a natural history of Devil’s Lake State Park, a postglacial vegetational history of Sauk County and Caledonia Township, Columbia County, south central Wisconsin, and a flora of the same area. Lange lives in Baraboo with his wife, Esther, and continues to explore and write about his surroundings.