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History of Lac du Flambeau

The band has inhabited the Lac du Flambeau area since 1745 when Chief Keeshkemun led the band to the area.

The band acquired the name Lac du Flambeau from its gathering practice of harvesting fish at night by torchlight. The name Lac du Flambeau or Lake of the Torches refers to this practice and was given to the band by the French traders and trappers who visited the area.

The Lac du Flambeau Reservation was officially established by treaties in 1837 and 1842. The area was continually logged in the following years and became a tourist destination for families from southern Wisconsin and Illinois around the turn of the century.

To increase economic activity and foster self-reliance among the various Native American communities, the tribe began bingo and casino operations. Revenues generated by the casino operations would go to the tribe and directly benefit the economic and social development of the community. The casino has enhanced both the economy of the Lakeland area and to provide public services to residents in Lac du Flambeau.

Did you know?

Lac du Flambeau is the location of sacred Strawberry Island "the place of the little people," a site recognized by the National Register of Historical Places. This island is the place where the last battle between the Sioux and the Ojibwe was fought in 1745. In 1966, the island was identified through an archeological survey as a place with artifacts and remains dating back to 200 B.C.

The Lac du Flambeau reservation has 260 lakes, 65 miles of streams, lakes, and rivers and 24,000 acres of wetlands. The lakes and other waterways are regularly restocked by the tribal fish hatchery with over 200,000 fish per year. Over the last 30 years the tribal fish hatchery has restocked the lakes with well over 415 million walleye fry.

The world's largest sturgeon to be speared was hauled in on the shores of Lac du Flambeau's Pokegama Lake. It measured 7 feet and 1 inch, weighed 195 pounds and 40 inches around. This world record fish is located in the local museum.