Legends of Paul Bunyan cross the entire United States, rooting him in California, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. One man, who lived most his life in Michigan, is believed to be the true man behind the legend. Will the real Paul Bunyan please stand up? 

According to Juliana L'Heureux' story, the REAL Paul Bunyan was Fabian "Joe" Fournier,

Born in Quebec around 1845, Fournier went to Michigan after the Civil War because logging paid considerably more than similar work in Canada at the time. He was large and strong, and could deftly handle a double-bit axe. Fournier stood six feet tall and had large, powerful
hands.

Also, as written in Wikipedia,

D. Laurence Rogers and others have suggested a possible connection between Paul Bunyan tales and the exploits of French-Canadian lumberjack Fabian Fournier (1845 – 1875). From 1865 to 1875, Fournier worked for the H. M. Loud Company in the Grayling, Michigan area.

There are statues of Paul and Babe all across Michigan but the one on Ossineke, Michigan, Which claims to have published the first story of Bunyan, has the only Neutered Babe as stated by Roadside America, I'll just let you read it for yourself.

Also located in Ossineke is a dinosaur garden.

So we may never know the true origin of Paul Bunyan but let's just stick with the Michigan story.

Whatever the connection, Paul Bunyan will be synonymous with Michigan's biggest football rivalry as the University of Michigan and Michigan State play each season for the Paul Bunyan Trophy.

Have you seen any other statues of Paul and Babe across Michigan? Share your photos in the comments.

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