Tag Archives: lakes

Wisconsin’s Devil’s Lake

Context & Background: 

RK has lived in southeast Wisconsin for 10 years and has visited the famous Devil’s Lake a couple of times. She tells the legend of the Baraboo monster that lives in Devil’s Lake

Performance: (via phone call)

My mom who is from Northern Wisconsin, has told me stories of Devils’s Lake. Even in the northern part of the state, this lake is famous and obviously all this legends and stuff is bullcrap, but it’s interesting to listen to the stories. So yea, my mom told me that even before the European settlers to Wisconsin, the native american people would beware of the lake and called it something in their original language that meant ‘bad spirit’. I mean now it’s called Devil’s lake, so I think they might have gotten it from them. They say that there is a monster who lives in the lake called Baraboo and it’s like the loch-ness monster, kind of. But yea, that’s basically the story and its not scary or anything, but it’s still cool to have something creepy in our neck of the woods. 


I lived in the same town as RK for 7 years and didn’t know the exact story of the lake. But it seems like a lot of Wisconsin history and culture is influenced by the Native American population that lived here. Unfortunately, there isn’t much Native American activity in that region in the current time period, but it’s very interesting to see how beliefs get transferred between cultures over large periods of time. 

For another source, see: Mallach, Lynn, and Lynn Mallach. “Legend and Folklore of the Devil’s Lake Monster.” Apex Adventure Alliance, 15 Apr. 2019, apexadventurealliance.com/legend-and-folklore-of-the-devils-lake-monster/.