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The Story of Westwood, Historic Lassen County Town

Filed under: Lassen West Village — Rod Kellar @ 8:18 pm July 17, 2014

the historic town of Westwood has many attractionsNot only is Westwood an excellent vacation destination for its beauty; this location is rich in American History and Western Lore. In 1884, The Red River Lumber Company was established by Thomas Barlow Walker. When Mr Barlow decided to move his company from Minnesota to California, he selected Westwood as the ideal location and along the way he created the legend of Paul Bunyan & Babe the Blue Ox.

In 1913, the Red River Company operated a company town and sawmill at Westwood, California in Lassen County.  In 1914, a successful advertising campaign was launched that employed the Paul Bunyan tales and images to help promote the company’s products and sales. And that is how one legend got started.

As the tall tale goes, Paul Bunyan was somewhat of a hero of North America’s lumberjacks – the workers who cut down the trees. He was known for his strength, speed and skill. The traditional stories says that he cleared forests from the northeastern United States to the Pacific Ocean. Paul Bunyan was the creation of storytellers from the middle  western Great Lakes area of the United States.

Early in the twentieth century, a collection of Paul Bunyan stories were written and published from the Red River Lumber Company. There are plenty of adventures captured in the stories- one including how Paul met Babe, the blue ox while rescuing the poor animal from a snow storm.

Whatever happened to Paul Bunyan? There are lots of stories out there. Some say that he was last seen in Alaska, while others saw him last in the Arctic Circle. Another story is that Paul returns to Minnesota every summer. Nobody is able to see him migrate because he moves in and out of the woods.

To view the entire short children’s story, CLICK HERE

Rod Kellar (12 Posts)

Rod Kellar is an experienced professional in the hospitality industry. He has managed several Casino and Resort facilities and is now turning his expertise to his second love of RVing. He is an avid history buff and loves the great outdoors, all of which help him promote the many spectacular attractions in and around Lassen County.