Settlements in Early Jenkins

It was 1986 when George and Isabella Jenkins moved to the area to manage the Clough Brothers summer camp known as Hay Creek Ranch. Within seven years, George acquired the Ranch property and turned it into a business to procure supplies and tote them out to the logging operations around the Whitefish Chain. Twelve years later a post office was established and in 1903 a township was organized. Just one year later, on March 14, 1904, community-minded resident, F.M. Miller petitioned the Crow Wing County Board to incorporate a designated area on either side of the current Highway 371 as the Village of Jenkins. The daily needs of the active logging industry provided the economic engine for the area, attracting not only logging camp workers, but also affording a ready market for farmers’ products.

Farming families settled into the Jenkins area, spawning the establishment of a mercantile, creamery and feed store, hardware store and entertainment businesses as well. Schoolteachers and store clerks, barbers and grocers came to town. Every family had a story as to how and why they came. Some of these early settlers’ names carry on in their descendents, who are not only still a part of the Jenkins community, but are also keeping alive the old stories of settling in Jenkins. Learn about the newborn twin that barely survived the rugged trek to a Brainerd hospital in 1928, what schooldays were like for the children of Jenkins settlers during the early part of the 1900’s, even wolves circling folks on their way home at night.