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Bowstring Minnesota Community Guide

Bowstring Township 

Bowstring (township) 1970 1980 1990 2000 2010 2000-2010 Change
Actual Percent
Population 125 283 217 242 230 -12  -4.96 
Land Area (sq. mile) 25.90 29.31 26.59 26.56 26.56 0 0.00
Density (persons per sq. mile) 4.83 9.66 8.16 9.11 8.70  -0.45 -4.96
Housing Units 107 243 179 259 250 -9  -3.47 
Households -- 99 73 101 112 +11  +10.89 
Persons Per Household -- 2.86 2.97 2.40 2.05 -0.35  -14.58 


Bowstring Township is a township in Itasca County, Minnesota. State Highway 6 serves as the major route in the community. According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of 36.0 square miles (93.1 kmē), of which, 26.6 square miles (68.8 kmē) of it is land and 9.4 square miles (24.3 kmē) of it (26.12%) is water. The elevation is 1,322 ft (403 m) above sea level.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

As of the census of 2000, there were 242 people, 101 households, and 77 families residing in the township. The population density was 9.1 people per square mile (3.5/kmē). There were 259 housing units at an average density of 9.8/sq mi (3.8/kmē). The racial makeup of the township was 95.87% White, 0.83% African American, 2.07% Native American, and 1.24% from two or more races.

There were 101 households out of which 25.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.3% were married couples living together, 5.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.8% were non-families. 20.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.67.

In the township the population was spread out with 21.1% under the age of 18, 8.3% from 18 to 24, 21.5% from 25 to 44, 29.8% from 45 to 64, and 19.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 45 years. For every 100 females there were 106.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 114.6 males.

The median income for a household in the township was $31,000, and the median income for a family was $38,750. Males had a median income of $30,417 versus $17,083 for females. The per capita income for the township was $18,006. About 20.0% of families and 24.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 48.0% of those under the age of eighteen and 9.1% of those sixty five or over.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.


Long before the white man came to northern Minnesota, the Ojibwe were settled on the shores of the Bowstring Lake area. The settlements were usually near water that provided a method of transportation.

Duncan MacDougal homesteaded on Bowstring Lake in about 1894, and William Donnelly arrived in 1895. Other early homesteaders included the Erickson, Melhus, Gibbs, Johnston, Christie and Sombs families.

W.J. Gibbs arrived in Bowstring in 1896 at the present site of the Bowstring Lodge. In 1901, he built a store which was designated as the first post office in 1902.

Jessie Lake and Bowstring townships were a combined township in the early days. In April 1916 The Itasca News reported that all of the officers elected were from the north end of Lake Jessie Township. This resulted in a petition that was liberally signed in both extremities of the Township for a legal division of the territory. The petition was approved by the county commissioners. The newly organized Township of Bowstring then held an election. Elected were supervisors Algot Johnson, J. H. Miller, L. Mallett, town clerk Ervin Sombs, and justices of the peace Malcolm Campbell and Jacob Jacobson.

After Gibbs moved to Inger in 1910, Carl Christie was named postmaster at Bowstring. The post office was moved to Schedin's store. Bowstring Store is the current site of the post office.

The area was dotted with small country schools at one time, often named for the families that donated the land. In Bowstring there was a Donnelly, Greenwood, South Bowstring and Sombs school.

Bowstring also has cemetery named after the family who donated the land. The Donnelly Cemetery is the final resting place for many of the of the Bowstring pioneers.

Later the people at Bowstring needed a church, so they built one. The U.S Forestry donated the trees. Local volunteers logged, sawed and planed the lumber. The women were busy raising money, and when they had $300, they began to build. Rev. Herb Peters was asked for help and they affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. The cornerstone was laid in 1961.

The Bowstring Store, located at the junction of State Highway 6 and County Road 133 was built by Mr. and Mrs. Leonard Schedin. The post office was moved to the store and the Schedins operated the business for many years. Present owners Randy and Chris Harju have built a large addition to the store and continue as postmasters of Bowstring.

Bowstring Store in the 1950's, Bowstring Minnesota
Bowstring Store in the 1950s

There is an airport at Bowstring were a 2500 foot landing strip opened in 1961. Owned by Itasca County, it is "the best kept secret in the County" according to Airport Board Member Art Merdes.

Excerpted from the Deer River Centennial History, published by the Deer River Area Centennial Committee, 1998

Bowstring Lake, Bowstring Minnesota, 1960's
Bowstring Lake, Bowstring Minnesota, 1960s Postcard and Postcard Image Collection - click to enlarge

Visit The Bowstring Photo Gallery for more recent and historic area photos

Bowstring Township
45115 County Road 133
Deer River, MN 56636

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Bowstring Town Hall, Bowstring Minnesota


Term Ends

Name and Address   Phone
Clerk 12/31/2020 Christine Schultz
46023 State Highway 6
Bowstring, MN 56631
  (218) 832-3360
Treasurer 12/31/2022 Beth S. Fahning-Hanggi
47339 Pagoda Road
Deer River, MN 56636
  (218) 832-3255
Supervisor 12/31/2022 Richard V. Schedin
46169 Jessie Brook Trail
Bowstring, MN 56631
  (218) 832-3171
Supervisor 12/31/2022 Ralph Hanggi
47339 Pagoda Road
Deer River, MN 56636
   (218) 832-3255
Supervisor 12/31/2020 Timothy Schultz
46023 State Highway 6
Bowstring, MN 56631
  (218) 832-3360

Post Office:  Mail delivery is handled by the Deer River Post Office.
US Post Office
12 1st Avenue NE
Deer River, MN 56636
(218) 246-8440
Toll Free:
(800) ASK-USPS

Regular Business Hours:
Week Days       8:30 am - 12:00 pm
                        1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Saturday           Closed

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US Post Office, Deer River Minnesota

Utility Type Utility Name Utility Phone
Electricity North Itasca Electric Coop (800) 421-9959
Natural Gas n/a --
Wastewater n/a --
Water n/a --
Telephone Arvig Communications (888) 992-7844
Cable TV Arvig Communications (888) 992-7844

Major Employers:
Employer Products/Services Employees


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Minnesota State Highway Map of the Bowstring Minnesota area
Minnesota State Highway Map of the Bowstring Minnesota area



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Bowstring State Forest

Lake Name Size
Lake info Lake Map Rec Map Topo Map
Bowstring 9528
Jessie 1753
Little Bowstring 327
Little Jessie 637

Store at the Carl Christie Resort, Bowstring Minnesota 1950
Store at Christie's Resort, 1950

Health Care:

nearest hospital and clinics located in Deer River


served by the Deer River School district








see below in the Business section


see below in the Business section

Bowstring Shore
49231 County Road 173
Deer River MN 56636
Phone: (218) 832-3101
Toll Free: (888) 832-3101
Bowstring Shores Resort, Bowstring Minnesota
Bowstring Shores Resort, Bowstring MinnesotaExperience the thrill of world class fishing! Walleyes, northerns or crappies. The excellent fishing at Bowstring Shores offers fun for all ages. Boats, motors, bait, gas and oil are available at the dock along with a ramp for boat launching. We brag the best fishing in the Chippewa National Forest. Join us and prove it to yourself! Fish the famous walleye and northern waters of Bowstring Lake, known by locals as "Minnesota's Pike Hole."

Whether you are looking for the quiet solitude of the Chippewa National Forest, or the companionship of new friends, you will find it all at Bowstring Shores Resort.

Our cozy lodge offers a place to gather with friends, old and new. Play a game of pool, enjoy a soft drink and just relax. Light groceries, gameroom, snack bar, fish freezing and laundry facilities are also available. For outside play, enjoy the heated pool, playground or a game of horseshoes, volleyball or basketball.

Our family operated resort offers 14 housekeeping cottages in a variety of sizes. Our cabins are guaranteed clean, attractive and comfortable. You need only bring groceries, towels, and your "can't do withouts". 

Bowstring Store
PO Box 212
Bowstring, MN  56631

Phone: (218) 832-3123

Bowstring Store, Bowstring Minnesota

Geiger's Trails End
51713 Trails End Road
Deer River, MN 56636
Toll Free: (800) 617-4589
Geiger's Trails End Resort, Bowstring Minnesota
Geiger's Trails End, Bowstring MinnesotaSpend a memorable vacation with us on Bowstring Lake. Our resort is designed with your comfort in mind, with lakeside vacation homes secluded in the Chippewa National Forest. There's NO LIMIT to the fishing adventures on Bowstring Lake, located 40 miles north of Grand Rapids, Minnesota. That's especially true if you're staying at Geiger's Trails End Resort, where we'll treat you like family by showing you the best fishing spots and providing great accommodations for your entire party. Get ready to REEL in unforgettable vacation memories. Geiger's is a family resort in the secluded Chippewa National Forest. With our clean and comfortable lakeside vacation homes, we're a cut above the rest. We also offer a large visiting lodge with a game room, TV, and a sandy beach -- perfect for hot summer days -- and a playground with swings, a slide and more!
Georgene's Haven
50241 County Road 35
Deer River, MN 56636
Phone: (218) 832-3076
Georgene's Haven, Bowstring Minnesota
Georgene's Haven is a quiet family resort located on beautiful Bowstring Lake and in the Chippewa National Forest. Bowstring Lake has been named Minneapolis Star Tribune's "Lake of the Week" several occasions and has the reputation for being one of the best Walleye, Northern and Crappie lakes in Minnesota. Bowstring Lake's 9000 acres offers twenty-three miles of shoreline that leads way to many a fishing hot spot!  Whether you wish to camp or stay in a cabin, Georgene's Haven offers both accommodations along the shoreline of Bowstring Lake. If you have a trailer or camper, you'll enjoy the spacious, wooded campground. Light and water hookups are available and there is an indoor bath and shower area.
Jessie View Resort and RV Campground
45756 County Road 35
Deer River, MN 56636
Phone: (218) 832-3678
Toll Free: (877) JESSIEV
Jessie View Resort and RV Campground, Bowstring Minnesota

Jessie View Resort is a Northern Minnesota resort and campground located in one of the most scenic regions in the country, the Chippewa National Forest. Hundreds of acres of forests, lakes and unspoiled beauty surround us. Our spacious property lets you relax and soak in the fresh breezes off the lake and our Minnesota cabins pamper you with modern amenities to make you feel at home. If you're self-contained with an RV or camper, we have one of the most up-to-date Minnesota campgrounds in the area. Prominently placed on 1500+ feet of sandy shoreline on Big Jessie Lake's SW side, we offer a spacious setting for your family vacation, trip with your friends or quiet getaway.

Northern Acres Resort & Campground
47292 Bowstring Access
Deer River, MN 56636
Phone: (218) 659-2845
(evening & weekend)
Phone: (218) 659-2885
(days & fax)
Northern Acres Resort & Campground, Bowstring Minnesota
Northern Acres Resort & Campground, Bowstring MinnesotaOur small, family-oriented resort and campground is located on Bowstring Lake in the heart of the Chippewa National Forest. Come and enjoy our quiet, unspoiled surroundings, the beautiful sunrises over Bowstring Lake, the excellent fishing and other outdoor sports, the scenic walking trails through the woods, many kinds of birds and wildlife, and the area's varied recreational opportunities. Because part of the fun in vacationing is to escape the hectic schedules of daily life, we offer very few planned activities. Bowstring Lake provides activities for all ages, including fishing, boating and swimming. We can suggest local events and sights, too, to interest almost everyone. There is even a small new casino in Deer River, less than half an hour away. Please plan to provide appropriate parental supervision for young children, especially near the water!
49352 Holasek Road
Deer River, MN 56636
Phone: (218) 832-5000
Toll Free: (877) 371-1122
Rocky Shores Resort, Bowstring Minnesota
A Minnesota vacation begins with fishing and family fun at Rocky Shores ResortThe resort is located on the east shore of Bowstring Lake in the heart of the Chippewa National Forest.  Here you can relax and enjoy nature in the great Northwoods, experience dozens of area attractions and get hooked on some of the best northern, perch, panfish, bass and walleye fishing in northern Minnesota.  Our seven 1, 2, and 3 bedroom cabins are very clean, comfortable and fully furnished with all the modern amenities to ensure you get the maximum enjoyment from your stay with us.  We've also added 12 seasonal RV sites set amidst the trees on our 40-acre property. We offer boat and motor rental, dock rental for your own boats, gas and oil, a protected harbor, and a fish cleaning house with free freezer space.  Bowstring Lake is one of the top walleye fishing lakes in Minnesota.The resort has plenty of activities, including a new heated outdoor swimming pool, a new playground, volleyball, horseshoes, hiking trails, a new game room and a lodge with snack items, light groceries, sweatshirts, t-shirts, and hats and souvenirs.
Snug Harbor Resort & Campground
50351 County Road 35
Deer River, MN 56636
Phone: (218) 832-3466
Toll Free: (800) 419-5289
Snug Harbor Resort on Scenic Bowstring Lake - A Minnesota Resort Perfect for Walleye Fishing
Snug Harbor Resort & Campground is located on the shores of Bowstring Lake in northeastern Minnesota, and is completely surrounded by the Chippewa National Forest.  The resort is 222 miles north of Minneapolis and St. Paul,  37 miles northwest of Grand Rapids, Minnesota, and 22 miles north of Deer River, Minnesota. The resort is open from May 1 through November 10 with seven lake-level cabins,  five full hook-up camping sites and four tent sites complete with showers to choose from.  Six of the cabins are two bedroom and one is a three bedroom.  The cabins feature modern conveniences and all have kitchens and baths.  Each cabin also has its own deck with patio chairs and a charcoal grill.  Bowstring Lake is widely recognized as one of the Top Walleye Fishing Lakes in Minnesota.  At just over 9,200  acres in size, Bowstring Lake provides tremendous multi-species fishing opportunities. Walleye, northern, jumbo perch, and crappie can all be readily caught here. And nothing compares to the views of the shoreline as seen from a boat or pontoon.

 View of Lake Shore at Schule's Camp Bowstring. 

Aerial Map

Topographic Map:   [click image to enlarge, zoom in or zoom out]

Topographic map of the Bowstring Minnesota area
Topographic map is courtesy of the Minnesota DNR - click map to zoom or enlarge

Topographic map of the Bowstring Minnesota area
Topographic map is courtesy of the Minnesota DNR - click map to zoom or enlarge    Home Page    Contact Us    Privacy



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