This documentary was a labor of love for director Mary Farrell, and a film that Wenonah Creates was thrilled to edit and promote. It debuted at the 2017 Frozen Film Festival in Winona, MN and won the Festival’s People’s Choice Award. Copies of the documentary are now on sale at the Winona County Historical Society and available to check out at the Winona Public Library.
“John Latsch: The Man and His River’ is a remarkable and first-of-its-kind film on the life and legacy of one of Winona’s most iconic entrepreneurs. The film weaves the personal story of an unassuming and gentle man with his outsized and enduring commitment to give back in a way that honored and preserved a community’s land and its people alike. Filmmaker Mary Farrell has brought Latsch’s world, for so long nearly lost to mythology and a small collection of anecdotes, fully and completely to life in a way sure to inspire future generations of those in Winona and far beyond to lead and give back in ways that endure and live on.”
–Brian Voerding, Executive Director, Engage Winona
John Latsch (1860-1934), a humble and hard-working man, gifted Winona with a lasting legacy. He and his father ran a successful wholesale grocery business called Latsch and Son. Latsch once said, “He made his money in Winona and was going to leave it here.”Latsch’s solo canoe trips on the Mississippi River and his love of the outdoors resulted in the purchase of over 18,000 acres of river bottoms and high land. He donated the acreage to the City of Winona and the states of Minnesota and Wisconsin so the public could enjoy the pleasures of outdoor recreation.
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