The Reindeer King

Join the Granite Falls Historical Society on December 19, 2021 from 1-3:30 PM for our annual Santa and Reindeer Event.  We bring live reindeer and Santa to our historic home to celebrate Volstead-Lomen family history and Christmas with the Granite Falls Community. This is an outdoor event only, please come according to you last name on this schedule – 

A-F 1-1:30 PM
G-J 1:30-2 PM
K-P 2-2:30 PM
Q-Z 2:30- 3 PM or closing

Bring your cameras for a great family photo and experience to remember!



Carl J. Lomen, Laura Volstead’s husband.

Carl J. Lomen earned the title of “The Reindeer King” for his unstinting efforts in organizing, promoting, marketing, and lobbying for the reindeer industry, which was primarily a Lomen venture physically located in Alaska’s Seward Peninsula. Traveling widely to attain his objective, Carl J. Lomen frequented both Alaska and points in the continental United States extensively; his friends and business acquaintances were worldwide. His interests were broad and diverse, as reflected in his files, and his records are both those of a businessman, and those of a man involved in social and cultural matrices.

From a herd of less than 9,000 head of reindeer, the Lomens created an industry of over 250,000 head of stock. Numerous corporations and subsidiary units were created to complement the reindeer interests of the Lomen family, and to facilitate the raising, processing, and marketing of reindeer. In addition to the Alaskan development of the reindeer industry, Carl J. Lomen was active throughout the U.S., promoting the marketing of reindeer meat, lobbying for favorable meat tariffs, and advancing the business interests of the various Lomen corporations. Through this activity he earned the title of “The Reindeer King”. The Lomen interests in the reindeer industry were ultimately frustrated by the U.S. Government’s purchase of non-native held herds in 1940.

Carl also brought reindeer and Santa to parades in St. Paul and other locations in the mid 1920s. He was married to the Volstead’s only child, Laura.  After their marriage they lived in Alaska, later moved to Seattle, WA.  They are both buried in the Granite Falls City Cemetery by the large Volstead stone.  

Carl and Laura Lomen in Alaska
Laura Volstead Lomen

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