By Dawn Priebe
Drive through the small, charming village of Ephraim in Door County, Wisconsin, and you can’t miss it. One of the most recognizable sights in Door County: Anderson’s Dock.
In the late 1850s the Anderson brothers, Aslag and Halvor, built their namesake dock to ensure that goods would have a way to be exported from Ephraim. As summer visitors starting pouring into Door County at the turn of the century, the dock became a standard port of call for steamships. But by the 1930s, roads had replaced the need for ships, resulting in the deterioration of the building.
Due to the dangers of sailing on Lake Michigan, upon reaching the safety of the dock, sailors started a tradition of carving their names and those of their boats into the side of the warehouse to leave a mark that they were there or to let their loved ones know they were safe.
Today, the Village of Ephraim owns both the dock and the warehouse, which also houses The Hardy Gallery. The sailors’ tradition continues with tourists adding their names or messages to the building. There are many hellos, declarations of love, and remembrances of loved ones who have passed, making the dock not only visually appealing but memorable as well.
When visiting Door County, be sure and stop by to add your hello to the world.
If you would like to purchase this article for your publication, please click here to contact the author directly.