Print, Photographic
Otisco Storefronts of 1900 Reprint. Otisco Main Street. Material: paper. Size: 4" x 6". Description: black and white photograph of three buildings identified as (l to r) the Elmer Lee house, Hotel Otisco (Merchants Hotel) and the Anderson Store all located in Otisco, Minnesota.
Donor's great uncle, Otto Bauman, a German immigrant, owned the Otisco Hotel, also known as Merchants Hotel, during the 1920s. One morning in 1924, Otto's niece, Elsie Bauman (Anderson) and her children, Beryl and Loren Anderson were going to the hotel for pancakes made by Otto's wife. When they got to the hotel, they discovered a cross had been burned there during the night. Four-year old Loren said to his mother, "They burned Jesus' cross!" People have presumed over the years that the Ku Klux Klan was responsible for the burning to express their dislike for Otto and his German heritage. Most of the other people in and around Otisco at that time were not targeted because they were Scandinavian such as store owners Anderson and Peterson, buttermaker Andrew Anderson and railroad section boss, Lars Paulson.