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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

History buffs search for origins of 'King's Point'

Monday, July 3, 2006

The name King's Pointe is soon going to be ingrained in Storm Lake's vocabulary, attached to a lavish lodge hotel and exciting waterpark, but even local historians seem perplexed as to where the name originally came from.

"I've done my best to dig up information, and so far, we haven't been able to find anything conclusive," says Lorraine Peterson, local historical expert.

One local woman, however, thinks she knows the answer, if not the story behind it.

Marjorie Holstein grew up in the 1930s and 1940s, when the name King's Point was still used to refer to a lovely lakefront area that is now in the midst of the Project AWAYSIS construction site.

She remembers her mother and grandmother often saying that the point was named after her great-grandmother, Sarah Ann King.

So far, history has yielded little information on the site's namesake.

Sarah was born in London, England, around 1846. She came to the U.S. with her family, and married Eugene DeGriselles, who reportedly was the son of Louise Perreau, the Countess de Griselles.

Eugene was said to he the grandson of European nobleman Count Phillipe Perreau. The couple settled in Wisconsin for a time, then set out for Buena Vista County at a time when it was largely unsettled, with her parents. Her father, Alfred, shows up only in an 1880 census roll, listed as a farmer. Alfred's burial place is not known.

Storm Lake was established in 1870, and Sarah arrived in 1872. She and her husband later moved to Sac County. She died in 1894, and is buried in a small cemetery east of the Storm Lake airport, and her husband in a Storm Lake cemetery.

Family histories make no mention of why the lakefront area might have been named for Sarah.

Carrie Preston Cozine, who married Sarah's son Frank, arrived in the Storm Lake area by covered wagon from Pennsylvania in the 1880s, and the family has been represented here ever since.

When the announcement was made last week that King's Pointe had been chosen as the name of the new multi-million dollar resort, it set off bells for Marjorie.

"That is a name that I had been told about since I was a very small girl. The first thing I thought was, 'I know that place,'" she told the Pilot-Tribune.

"I think it's nice that the name is being known again, but nobody knows who these people are behind the name," she said.

In fact, the name was virtually forgotten for generations. Early dredging changed the lakeshore landscape and obliterated the natural point by the 1940s. A few locals can remember fishing King's Point, it shows up on one early map possessed by the city clerk's office, and a 1930s postcard of the site was discovered on e-Bay recently.

It also appeared in a photo in the city's centennial newspaper printed around 1970, apparently taken from the site of the golf clubhouse, Peterson said.

The local historical society is welcoming any materials or information anyone may have about the history of King's Point.

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