Paul Friedlein’s Jolly Ridge

October 1, 2007 at 6:37 pm Leave a comment

Paul Friedlein’s Jolly Ridge (aka Inspiration Point) |  1885-1984  |  Guttenberg, IA
Rock grotto environment  |  Created mid 1950s – 70s 
Private property

After leaving Dan’s we headed on south, slightly past Guttenberg on Highway 52, with hopes of finding Paul Friedlein’s Jolly Ridge (aka Inspiration Point.)  On past travels, the timing or weather hadn’t ever panned out for finding it, but this time everything was perfect.  We found his nephew’s wife, Diane, at home (her husband, Lee Dickson, had helped Paul with the rock work, and you can see his handy work on the house.)  Diane was most gracious in sharing stories and giving a guided tour of the stone work.

After suffering a debilitating hip injury during his professional wrestling career, Paul Friedlein built his stone grotto and home that over look the Mississippi River,  one rock at a time…on his hands and knees. 

The grotto includes stones that were cut with a diamond saw and inset into cement to create a tableau (or reliefs) of each of the 14 neighbors, complete with unique imagery of each of the families professions.  It also includes a sculpted “family tree” with his sisters represented by a  triangular form, and brothers rectangular.  Stones on the sides represent each niece or nephew.  Larger sculptures represent Mother and Father.

(if you are wanting to visit, please call first – 563-252-3433.  It is just south past the scenic lookout, on the river side of highway 52)

more info…


Entry filed under: outsider art and folk art environments, rock environment.

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