Mystery Photo #100: Early Settler

This photo is labeled “Early Settler Duluth MN.” And that’s all we know. Who is this dude?

And what the heck is he eating or picking apart?



about 5 years ago

Well, I did a search of the image, and I think it's Henry Mayhew, Grand Marais pioneer. (The Mayhew Inn has this image on its website, but I couldn't find it labeled. If you scroll through the images, you'll see other images that appear to be the same man.) There's another picture of the man here, I think.

And here's a quote from the Mayhew Inn regarding the man: 

Henry Mayhew was an explorer, pioneer-prospector, land speculator, fur-trader, entrepreneur and county commissioner credited with developing The Gunflint Trail and the City of Grand Marais. By 1873 Henry Mayhew, Dr. Thomas Mayhew and Samuel Howenstine owned all of the land comprising the original village of Grand Marais. Henry, along with his brother Dr. Thomas Mayhew, owned property in Grand Marais that served as a trading post, general store and doctors office. This store was located in the approximate location of the current Coast Guard Station. By 1875 Henry Mayhew constructed the first overland trail from Grand Marais to the border lakes which is now known as The Gunflint Trail. Their brother, Joseph Mayhew, was the first lighthouse keeper in 1886. The Mayhew family had a homestead on the East Bay, and built the first lodging establishment in Grand Marais called The Mayhew Hotel. The Mayhew’s old homestead has appropriately been converted into the now Cook County Historical Society & Museum.


about 5 years ago

So yeah, not a Duluth pioneer.

Paul Lundgren

about 5 years ago

Here's a Henry Mayhew info dump from Gina Temple-Rhodes, who puts forth the suggestion that those items in front of the presumable Mr. Mayhew in the mystery photo are rocks or other geological specimens. 
From the 1880 Geological and Natural History Survey of Minnesota, published by the state Geologist N.H. Winchell: 

From the same geological report from 1882. 

Front page news in the Duluth Evening Herald, May 20, 1891. A new mine overseen by Mr. Mayhew with "Chicago interests."

From the Cook County Historical Society via Facebook we get a look at Henry Mayhew's brother, Thomas. There is a non-native looking bird in this photo that seems to match up with the bird in the photo Heidi found. 

Photo of two early Cook County doctors attending to a little Indian girl's frozen foot ca. 1903. On the left is Dr. Thomas Mayhew who was a "homeopathic" physician. On the right is Dr. Henry Jones who arrived in Grand Marais in 1889. Since they were both rather elderly, the county hired Dr. Charles A. Houston (not pictured) as the county physician and he practiced from 1902-1906. These dedicated professionals were kept busy, especially by the many mishaps that occurred in the various logging camps. Dr. Frank Hicks replaced Dr. Houston in 1906 and remained in the county for many, many years.


about 5 years ago

H. Mayhew and his goat, Grand Marais, Minnesota

Interesting. It does seem likely that he was examining geological specimens at the table. At least that's more plausible than my suspicion that he was looking at goat poop.

Gina Temple-Rhodes

about 5 years ago

There are quite a few Mayhew photos (they were a prominent family (at least 2 brothers and their families) in the Grand Marais area, probably had a few links to Duluth as well) on the Cook County Historical Society Facebook page.


about 5 years ago

It could be chestnuts? Chestnut trees used to cover most of the country.

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