Plum Lake is a 1057 acre lake located in Vilas County. It has a maximum depth of 57 feet. Visitors have access to the lake from public boat landings. Fish include Musky, Panfish, Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Northern Pike and Walleye. The lake's water is moderately clear. (From the DNR website.)
One of the islands in Plum Lake is now called Goodspeed Island, named for the Goodspeed family that owned it for years, but no longer has any interest there. The most famous of the Goodspeed family was Edgar, a New Testament scholar at the University of Chicago. Some of the work on his translation of the New Testament was done while staying in his cabin on Paradise Island. In his autography, As I Remember, Edgar devotes a chapter to "The Island" telling of their time in the area before they purchased Paradise Island, including roaming around Razor Back (sic) Lake. In 1938 Goodspeed hosted the New Testament Committee for the Revised Standard Version of the Bible for a week away from things, so they could work uninterupted. The entire committee (Luther A. Weigle, Yale University, Chairman; James Moffatt, Union Theological Seminary, Executive Secretary; Walter Russell Bowie, Union Theological Seminary; Millar Burrows, Yale University; Henry J. Cadbury, Harvard University; Clarence T. Craig, Oberlin Graduate School of Theology; Edgar J. Goodspeed, University of Chicago; Frederick C. Grant, Union Theological Seminary; and Abdel R. Wentz, Lutheran Theological Seminary, Gettysburg) except Wentz were present. The next year they met again for two weeks at Paradise Island and this time Wentz was present. The preface of Goodspeed's Short Bible is signed, "Edgar J. Goodspeed, Paradise Island, July 20, 1933." However, none of the writing about the Island indicates whether more than the Preface was written there. A brief biography (more than is available on Wikipedia) is contained in the Guide to the Edgar J. Goodspeed Papers at the University of Chicago.
Thomas Goodspeed, father of Edgar, led the family in summering on Goodspeed Island. Thomas was instrumental in the founding of the University of Chicago, and after retirement wrote a history of the University of Chicago, some of the work being done on Paradise Island. [Guide to the Thomas W. Goodspeed Papers at the University of Chicago]
**** indicates no known author.
NAME OF THE LAKE
Seymour Curry, visitor at Bent's Camp around the turn of the century, in his historical notes states, in regard to the name of Plum Lake: "Named in honor of a man of that name whose initials are not known. He is a lawyer of Chicago, and was a frequent visitor to the region." Curry
The DNR Invasive Species Inventory for Vilas County Lakes, shown under LINKS in this Topic, 2011, shows these invasive species in this lake: Banded mystery snails, Chinese mystery snails, and rusty crayfish.
AIS BOAT INSPECTIONS
The DNR website provides this data for Plum Lake (Access off Razonback Road)
Year: 2007 / 2008 / 2009 / 2010 / 2011
Boats Inspected: 236 / 113 / 155 / 261 / 262
People Talked to: 498 / 273 / 368 / 598 / 597
Manhours used: 128 / 76 / 100 / 160 / 154
For the Town Lake access:
Year: 2008 / 2009 / 2010 / 2011
Boats Inspected: 42 / 302 / 13 / 5
People Talked to: 100 / 76 / 30 / 14
Manhours used: 33 / 31 / 9 / 7