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Out with the old, in with the new

WILLMAR -- A new logo that's being drawn for the Kandiyohi County Historical Society is based on one that was designed decades ago by Willmar artist Eben Lawson.

Lawson was a well-known artist whose cartoons were published in what was then called the Willmar Tribune. His brother, Victor, was the publisher of the newspaper from 1895-1940.

The design features a large letter "K" with three buffalo fish swimming around it. The design has appeared on a small scale in past publications sponsored by the Kandiyohi County Historical Society.

When the design is completed, it will be put on a 20-foot sign that will be located in the parking lot of the Kandiyohi County Historical Society. It will also replace the existing logo of a broad axe that's on the county's 64 historic site markers.

The board axe logo was put on the markers about 25 years ago. It hasn't been without controversy. While the broad axe logo is supposed to depict a tool that pioneers used for logging and farming, many have associated it with a tomahawk.

New London artist Bill Gabbert is giving the old Lawson drawing, which he called a "good, sound design," an updated look that can be used to make a colorful vinyl decal that can be put on the historic site markers. "I'm giving it a fresher look," said Gabbert.

The design should be "unifying and acceptable by pretty much everyone," he said.

Mona Nelson, executive director of the Kandiyohi County Historical Society, said the new logo will be used to gradually replace the existing markers.

Carolyn Lange

A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.

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