Woman enjoys celebrating her Ojibwa heritage; will speak on culture, collection


One of the first pieces to become part of Judy Conrad’s collection of Native American items is a headdress she received as a child in the 1940s. It was crafted at small village made up of several teepees along the lakeshore near St. Ignace. She will participate in a presentation titled “History of the Ojibwa People,” which will be held Saturday, April 27, at 1 p.m. at the Ishpeming Carnegie Library. The public event is free and includes refreshments. (Photo by Joseph Zyble)

By Larry Chabot
When Judy Conrad, like millions of other Americans, launched a genealogy search to fill out her family tree, she learned that other family members were also searching, and that she was looking in the wrong place for her Native American ancestors. And like everyone who discovers a previously unknown family history, she was overwhelmed by the results.
“I was looking in Michigan at first,” she said, “when I should have been in Wisconsin. My search led me to Madeline Island (in the Apostle Islands). The first time I stepped on ancestral ground on the island, I felt like I was coming home!”
Over the years, Judy not only learned much more about her Native American heritage but also collected original artifacts relating to her Ojibwa people. As a member of the Friends of the Library at Ishpeming Carnegie Library, Judy will discuss her findings and display some of the artifacts at a lyceum on Saturday, April 27, at 1 p.m. in the library. She will be joined by one of two of her cousins, Dan Garceau and Jeff Carlson. All three are seasoned researchers, with Jeff compiling all of their research on a computer…


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Judy’s mom was a Yooper

By Larry Chabot
How many know that entertainer Judy Garland’s mother was born in the house at 509 West Washington Street in Marquette in 1893? She was Ethel Milne, and her dad John was a fireman and engineer on the Duluth South Shore & Atlantic Railroad from 1886 until the family moved to Superior, Wis., in 1911. Ethel married Frank Gumm and settled in northern Minnesota where Frank managed theaters. Here, Ethel gave birth to three daughters. The youngest, Frances, changed her name to Judy Garland and became one of the 20th century’s superstar entertainers.
The yellow Milne house on West Washington is still there, next to a service station. It was home to other families after the Milnes left Marquette, and has housed several businesses in recent years.

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