Day 8- Tabernacle Choir Tour

This morning we left very early on a long day of traveling towards Minnesota where the last concert will be held Thursday night. On the way we stopped at Black River Falls, a small town near the Black River where the location near the river and supply of white pine made it possible for the supply of lumber to be cut and moved to the water to be floated down towards the Mississippi, where it would be routed to Nauvoo for the construction of the Nauvoo Temple.

City of Black River Falls

The supply of lumber anywhere near Nauvoo was much less plentiful. It was said that the trees were growing so thick and straight and tall, that one could walk a great distance under them without being in the sun. Their branches were limited to the very top of the trees where the sun was so there were few knots in the wood along their tall trunks. Many were as much as four to five feet around so there was a lot of wood there. The choir created and paid for a monument that was installed in the large green central park of the town where an aquatics center was located at one time.

Here I am standing behind the monument to the loggers.

The monument is to honor those who spent many years there laboring to harvest the timber needed for the temple. Several people also lost their lives during the seasons when the materials were floated down the river as they helped clear log jams and were drowned in the river.
In 1911 the City suffered a tragic flood in the early 20th century that washed away many businesses and much of the downtown area. They build a very large canal to carry away any similar flood waters in the future. This canal runs by the side of the park. There were about 2,500 persons in attendance at the dedication ceremonies and the choir performed three pieces for them with piano accompaniment. Elder Craig Cardon of the First Quorum of the Seventy spoke to the crowd explaining the significance of the site and the lumber that was produced for the temple from the site. It was a moving tribute to a group of pioneer loggers who were largely unknown but who made a major contribution to the construction of the Nauvoo Temple through the harvest of lumber materials at this location.

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