By Joe Bachman
What’s in a name? Almost everything.
While we know this modern day setting as E. Grand Ave. in Wisconsin Rapids, in 1907, it was Vine St. in Grand Rapids. It wasn’t until 13 years later in 1920, that Grand Rapids officially changed its name to Wisconsin Rapids.
The pictured bridge that connected Cranberry St. (modern day W. Grand Ave.) to Vine St. has gone through many tribulations — destroyed by flood ice in 1875, then destroyed again during the flood of 1888, until finally rebuilt in 1899.
On the Wood Block, you can see Kruger & Warner home furnishing store, now known as Infitech, the Wood County Drug Co. now serves as the home for Nieman’s Photography, and A.P. Hirzy jewelry store, known as of December as Schmidt’s Jewelry.
In 1907, the Post Office spanned three stories, but seems small compared to what it is now on W. Grand Ave. The space is currently used by a law firm.
Vine St. may go by a different name 110 years later, but if one thing has remained aside from the unique architecture of the Wood Block, it’s that many still call this place ‘home’.