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Car part Bunyan.

Kaiser Paul: Bunyan Made of Car Parts

Field review by the editors.

Alpena, Michigan

This 30-foot-tall Paul Bunyan is sculpted from car fenders and hoods salvaged from Detroit junk yards -- mostly from old Kaiser automobiles, which is how he got his name.

According to Norman Woelk, "My father William L. Woelk had this built for his gas station [Paul Bunyan's Gas and Eat] in Gaylord in the very early 1960s." The original work cost $4,500, created by Birmingham artist Betty Conn and architect Edward X. Tuttle.

When the Gas and Eat closed in the early 1970s the statue went to the local Indian museum, and when the museum went out of business in 1980 Kaiser Paul was almost scrapped. Gaylord resident Laurie Moore saved and bought Paul, and eventually found a sponsor in businessman Bernard Hamilton, who bought Kaiser Paul and moved him to Grayling, where he stood outside his AuSable-Manistee Realty Company.

When Hamilton left the state, Kaiser Paul was acquired by the president of Michigan's Alpena Community College, and began his fourth career as the mascot for ACC's sports teams, the Lumberjacks. He's stood next to the college's Park Arena since 1999. Auto body students at the college repaired the statue, and in 2014 he was sandblasted and given a fresh coat of paint.

The Bunyan as he once stood.

Also see: Paul Bunyan: Friend of Foe?

Kaiser Paul: Bunyan Made of Car Parts

Alpena Community College

666 Johnson St., Alpena, MI
North edge of town, a half mile east of US Hwy 23, just off Johnson St. on the campus of Alpena Community College. From Johnson St. turn north onto the road between the main college building and the Besser Museum. Drive to the north end of the parking lot on the right; you'll see the statue there.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Big Bald Eagle HeadBig Bald Eagle Head, Alpena, MI - < 1 mi.
Maritime Center, Century of ShipwrecksMaritime Center, Century of Shipwrecks, Alpena, MI - 1 mi.
3D Fish Mural3D Fish Mural, Alpena, MI - 1 mi.
In the region:
Lumbermen's Monument, Oscoda, MI - 45 mi.

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