A little Fence Lake history:

The 27th largest lake in Wisconsin is Fence Lake.  This pristine, two-story lake is located within the Bear River Watershed in Vilas County.  For hundreds of years Fence Lake was used by Indigenous people for subsistence.  Virtually every facet of their lives depended on their relationship with the lake and its surrounding habitats for food, medicine, building materials, and transportation.

With the arrival of the Europeans in the early to mid-seventeenth century, Fence Lake and the surrounding habitats took on a new use; to help provide the world with furs.  Lac du Flambeau became a transportation center for the fur trade, and Fence Lake became part of the network of canoe routes and portages which linked Lac du Flambeau with trade routes in all directions. Fence Lake, for example, was part of the primary route linking Lac du Flambeau with Lake Tomahawk and the Wisconsin River to the east.

In 1914, a private sporting club called the Ojibwe Lodge was built on the northeast shore.  In 1936, Claud Robinson bought the land that would become Adventurer's Camp in 1937.  Unfortunately, the lodge burned down in 1978. Mars Family, the founders of the Mars Candy Company bought property on the eastern shore of Fence Lake and established the unincorporated community of Marlands.  They built a large timber lodge with several small cottages and a private boat channel.  The lodge was a notable structure, held together by wooden pegs rather than nails.  In the 1970s, the lodge was destroyed by fire. The bay in Fence Lake where Marlands was located is known as Mars Bay.  By the 1960s, vacationers to Fence Lake could stay at resorts like Fence Lake Lodge, Bob Peck's Resort, Rock-A-Way Resort, Shady Lake Resort, and Gromacki's Muskie Lodge.  Today, the Lighthouse Resort is the only resort on Fence Lake (though not open to the public).

For more information, please visit: www.ldftribe.com Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians This article was reprinted with permission.