Nestled in the remote wilderness of the Chippewa National Forest, Remer is home to less than 400 inhabitants, and is adjacent to the Willow River.
The area is steeped in rich logging history. In the late 1800's, the logging boom was in full force. Remer was an area of vast wilderness, full of virgin pine forests. With the Willow River running through the area, it was ideal for the logging industry. Several logging camps sprung up including Freeman & Gray's Logging Camp in 1895 which was established in the southwest corner of Big Sand Lake. The Haywood Lumber Company also established its own logging camp in 1897, which was located on Graves Lake.
Both camps used the Willow River to float their timber to the Mississippi. The last major river drive was in 1909.
The town had since grew to accommodate the new found industry, which now included the Soo Line Railroad, a General store, and a post office. A man by the name of William P. Remer, served as the town's first postmaster, and also owned the town's first General Store. He and his brother, Ernest, were some of the first pioneers of Grand Rapids and worked for the Rieshus-Remer Land Co. William moved to the area and filed for land in October of 1902. He and his wife Sophia, and daughter Florence were described by G.H. Perry, to have "lived in the solitude of a region where grew the tall pine trees and where the settlers were few. Where they lived in a log cabin, and walked mile after mile exploring the lakes and trees of the area."
It wasn't until November of 1904, that the town was officially named Remer. It had been known briefly as "Willow River", but when the residents had tired to obtain a post office, they learned that there was already a Willow River post office in existence. Thus, the name of the town was changed to that of Remer in November of 1904.
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Mark your calendars for
July 7 & 8, 2023
and make sure to make the trip to Remer for fun, food and maybe even finding Bigfoot (fingers crossed)