Communities Along the Chippewa River – Meridean, Wisconsin

August 20, 2016 Travis Dewitz
No. 0916 - Old Brack's Store - Meridean, Wis.

No. 0916 – Old Brack’s Store – Meridean, Wis.


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Historians have discovered a number of stories behind how Meridean got its name. All of them make mention to a girl named “Mary Dean.” The story that captivates us most is about Mrs. Dean and her daughter Mary traveling on the Chippewa River by steamboat. Mary, the fascinating young soul, won the hearts of many of the passengers during the journey. She abruptly became sick and was taken ashore where she died and was buried under a tree; which locals say was washed away by the floods. The area was then named “Meridean” to commemorate her. Locals today share tales of haunting adventures of Mary Dean near the boat landing. Regardless of how Meridean received its’ name, it is obvious that the River holds stories of adventure, history, change, and preservation. – Erika Johnson

General References
Historic City Series – The View From Meridean’s Mainstreet


Chippewa River Heritage Series



travis dewitz pines portrait suit thumb web PhotographTravis Dewitz is a remarkable photographer in the Chippewa Valley. He is well known for photographing local sceneries, landmarks, venues, buildings and people in various and ingenious ways. Though you may not know him personally, his work provides a unique foundation of our local community and his photographs are unmistakable. Dewitz’s pictures are an impressive feat and preserve a moment; long after our travels are over, and our memories faded, photos are what remind us of the adventures we had and the connections to the people we met. Learn More About Him Here | Buy His Book Here

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Travis Dewitz

I. Love. Photography. I love it. It lightens my heart, fills my soul, and allows me to capture life the way that I see it. I constantly yearn to show life in a way that hasn’t been seen before, to bring images to people in a fresh and innovative way. My favorite focus in photography, my specialty I guess you would say, is Railroad Photography & Art. Something about the rumbling of these great, big, beautiful machines. The way they shake the earth beneath you as they rumble by, how they invade your chest and you can feel the rumble inside you. The plumes of heat on a hot day represented in a heat wave. Snaking through a western valley, void of trees or any other distracting element. Just the train, by itself, in it’s own inexplicable beauty and power. From the time I was a child, they have captured my imagination. I’ve recently gotten into portraiture a bit, and I want to bring some of my experiences with trains to that arena. To capture the power of a person, the sadness, loneliness, omniscience, pride, love, & carefree spirit in a way that hasn’t been done before. I want people to look at themselves in a photograph I have taken, and see a side of themselves that they think no one else has ever seen. Dewitz Photography is all about capturing a moment in a way that has never been seen before, capturing a beauty that some never knew was even there.