Ontario Welcome Center History Walk: The Man Root

© Photographed April 8, 2017
Erected 2015 by Forward Ontario
Ontario, Vernon County, Wisconsin
43.722751, -90.590023
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The Man Root
The Kickapoo Mountain Ginseng Company was formed in about 1903 by A.T. Saunders and two brothers, Ed (pictured at Right) and Charles Lord. The first beds were on Ed Lord's farm, on what is now the campground at Wildcat Mountain State Park. The demand from the Chinese market for the wild root, which they believed extended life and increased male potency, was the inspiration to domesticate the wild plant and grow it in sheltered beds. World War II events killed the demand for ginseng from Chinese markets. But interest in the crop reemerged later in the century and it is still grown locally. This area is ideal for ginseng cultivation, as it has cool climates, well-drained hillsides and hardwood forests. Crops mature in three to six years, compared with eight years or more for the wild crop. Market prices for ginseng vary wildly but can bring hundreds of dollars per pound.
The marker is located along the Ontario Welcome Center History Walk at Palen Memorial Park and is accessible on the northeast corner of the intersection of State Street and Pleasant Street, Ontario, Wisconsin 54651.

Vernon Broadcaster (June 3, 2015): Ontario to celebrate opening of Palen Park on June 13

Click here to view all markers at the Ontario Welcome Center History Walk

The marker is located at the Ontario Welcome Center History Walk.

Looking west into town . . .

View coming into town from eastbound Wisconsin Highway 33.

The marker is located in Ontario, Wisconsin.

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