Parks & Recreation

Enger Park & Twin Ponds

Enger Twin Ponds

From Zenith: A Postcard Perspective of Historic Duluth, copyright © 2005, Zenith City Press, Duluth, Minnesota

Some think Enger Tower was once an active lighthouse; others, a tribute from a grieving husband to his dead wife. Neither story is true. The sixtyfoot-high, five-story octagonal structure was built in 1939 to honor Bert Enger, a prominent area businessman and Norwegian immigrant who came to this country penniless and made a fortune in furniture and real estate. When the tower was finished, Crown Prince Olav of Norway visited Duluth to dedicate it. Since then, it has provided visitors with a great look at Duluth’s harbor. (See Enger Tower for a more complete history.)

The park itself was created after Enger gave the city six hundred acres of land on which the Tower and surrounding gardens, and the Enger Park Golf Course were built. Today Enger Park contains a gazebo, a pavilion, gardens, and the Peace Bell, a replica of a cherished temple bell in Ohara, Japan, one of Duluth’s sister cities. At the end of World War II American sailors on the USS Duluth took the original bell as a spoil of war (it was almost melted down by the Japanese as part of the war effort), then returned it to Ohara years later.

Just east of the park sit Duluth’s Twin Ponds (pictured). Known as the “Gem Lakes” in the 1890s, the pools were created by damming Buckingham Creek. Many of the old Tally-ho parties along Skyline Parkway stopped at the tiny lakes for picnics. The ponds are used today as swimming holes.

Originally called the Gem Lakes, Twin Ponds were created when Buckingham Creek was dammed. Enger Memorial Tower  sits five hundred feet above Lake Superior, providing a stunning view of the Duluth-Superior Harbor. The structure was built in 1939, eight years after Bert Enger’s death.


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