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La Crosse, Wisconsin: 25-Foot-Tall Hiawatha (Gone)

25-foot-tall, 20-ton cement Indian unveiled in October 1961, after four years of work by local high school art teacher Anthony Zimmerhakl, who built it in his backyard with his two sons. Removed on August 11, 2020.

I-90 exit 3 onto US 53/Hwy 35 (La Crosse). Drive south, following US 53, for 4.5 miles. US 53 bears right and becomes 3rd St. In four blocks turn right onto State St. Drive three blocks, then turn right into Riverside Park. Hiawatha is back by the river's edge.
Removed Aug. 11, 2020.

Visitor Tips and News About 25-Foot-Tall Hiawatha

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Statue of Hiawatha.

Statue of Hiawatha

According to a news story in the La Crosse Tribune, the city's Board of Park Commissioners voted unanimously on July 16, 2020 to take down the city's statue of Hiawatha. The riverside figure has been a tourist attraction in La Crosse since October 1961, but has drawn criticism in recent years for its cheesy representation of the local Native peoples. "City officials hope to have it removed by winter." A new home for the statue has yet to be found.

[ Team, 07/19/2020]

Hiawatha statue.

25-Foot-Tall Hiawatha

Overwhelming, a must see! Close to the Mississippi Queen.

[Mike Weisenberger, 06/18/2020]

Hiawatha statue.

Hiawatha Statue

25 Ft. statue of Hiawatha, standing in Riverside Park where the Mississippi, LaCrosse and Black Rivers meet. Nice park to walk along the river.

[J. Liobis, 05/03/2003]

When he was unveiled in 1961 he was the World's Largest Hiawatha. Then three years later Michigan built one even bigger. In 2000 there was talk of tearing down the statue, which needed repair, but money was raised and Hiawatha was restored.

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