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Shevlin (Or Gwaaba'andaawangaakwa'igaang) Minn 1930

 
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Valued Member
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Posted 09/09/2021   9:03 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add patg23 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Shevlin is a city in Clearwater County, Minnesota, United States. The population was 176 at the 2010 census.

1930 was almost the highpoint at 228.

The local Ojibwe needing a name to call this new community in the area started to call Shevlin as Gwaaba'andaawangaakwa'igaang meaning "at where one is shoveling sand" where "shoveling" was a play on words with the City's English name.

"Shevlin today has two churches, two bars, mini storage and numerous other home based enterprises"

I like this letter for the very important message it carried; so much that they used 2 to send it in town.

Of course it's February in Minn.,so who's walking (except the postman)!


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shevlin,_Minnesota
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United States
1203 Posts
Posted 09/09/2021   10:26 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add erilaz to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I want to see Gwaaba'andaawangaakwa'igaang in the CDS!
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United States
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Posted 09/10/2021   10:38 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Shakey 7 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I second that.

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United States
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Posted 09/10/2021   11:55 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Shakey 7 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It is very difficult to say that is the true translation of Gwaaba'andaawangaakwa'igaang. Since there are at least 11 dialects of the Ojibwe, Ojibwa language here in the United States It is next to impossible to say with exact certainty which one was used. My father in law is Ojibwa from Wisconsin and has family that are located on the Leech Lake reservation in Minnesota which is very close to the town of Shelvin. Then again it could very well be a Canadian dialect that was used.
The term used is the description of a place I do know that much. Often times the language that is translated is very different from region to region. It really depends on who you talk to. For example: Ojibwe is used almost extensively in places west of the Mississippi River and Ojibwa is used east of the Mississippi River and the term Chippewa is the English and French translation of the term Ojibwa. Then again it is dependent upon whom you talk to.

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United States
57 Posts
Posted 09/10/2021   12:53 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Shakey 7 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I found my copy of the translation dictionary. It is titled: A Concise Dictionary of Minnesota Ojibwe authored by John D Nichols and Earl Nyholm. The term has to be broken down into syllables. The first word Gwaaba'an means to scoop. When combined to say Gwaaba'waawaangwaan means shovel for dirt. The word for sand is bingwi. However the reference to dirt is very close to the translation again is up to the interoperation of the dialect used.

My father in law is a first cousin to Earl Nyholm.
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Posted 09/10/2021   1:31 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add patg23 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Shakey7,
Thank you for your insight to the translation.It's nice to know it has some validity, and not some made up local "shaggy dog story".

pat

https://birchbarkbooks.com/all-onli...esota-ojibwe

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United States
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Posted 09/10/2021   1:38 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Shakey 7 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It was a pleasure.

Jeremy
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United States
57 Posts
Posted 09/10/2021   1:54 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Shakey 7 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I was talking to my father in law about this topic and he said that his father was a cook for some of the logging camps in the area around Leech Lake. He would go where the work was. For lack of a better term migrant worker if you will. He ultimately settled in Milwaukee and became a welder.
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United States
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Posted 09/10/2021   3:31 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GMC89 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Interesting lesson Shakey 7
One never knows what one will find on this forum.
Regards
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United States
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Posted 09/10/2021   4:04 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Shakey 7 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thank you.
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United States
97 Posts
Posted 09/10/2021   8:30 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Revenue N Covers to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
My GG Aunt (b1881) was the first school teacher in Gwaaba'andaawangaakwa'igaang. Want to say Clearwater Co dist. 17 or 20 but have to look that up. Seriously doubt she knew the long name though. can't wait to pass this on to some cousins. Thanks, Andy
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Posted 09/10/2021   8:53 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add John Becker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
the very important message it carried; so much that they used 2 to send it in town


True. Shevlin did not have city carrier service (note the lack of a street address). Thus the sender could have sent this as a local drop letter for 1 cent.
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United States
97 Posts
Posted 09/10/2021   10:33 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Revenue N Covers to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Ooh man JB, that just feels like piling on little Gwaaba'andaawangaakwa'igaang now. I have been to and through Shevlin at least 100 times and can say with great certainty they Do have a road! and, many places have addresses too. Kidding aside- Last time I was there found all kinds of great postcards and photo's in a huge antique shop. Also got an awesome Gluek beer sign at a small shop there...
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