World’s Largest Brown Trout Sculpture – Baldwin, Michigan - Atlas Obscura

World’s Largest Brown Trout Sculpture

This enormous fish commemorates the unplanned release of brown trout into a Michigan river. 


The Baldwin River (formerly named the North Branch of the Pere Marquette River) was the unplanned site of the first-ever planting of brown trout in the United States. In 1884, the fry (young trout) were being transported in milk cans by rail. But during their journey, the temperatures began to rise, threatening the fish’s life. 

To save the fry, they were released into the Baldwin River from a bridge a short distance from where the sculpture now stands. Among anglers, the river watershed is now known as a world-class, blue-ribbon trout fishing stream.

The sculpture is conveniently located in downtown Baldwin’s handsome Brown Trout Sculpture Park. The artwork was designed by Sculptor Ivan Iler of St. Johns, Michigan, and was dedicated on May 6, 2018. According to the specifications, the finished sculpture is 25 feet tall and 8 feet in diameter at its widest point.

The newly installed sculpture is quite impressive and has become a proud symbol for both the Village of Baldwin and Lake County.

Know Before You Go

The sculpture is located on the east side of Michigan Avenue (M-37) between 8th and 9th Streets. Both on and off-street parking are available in the area.

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