This cabin represents a little known piece of history. In the early 1900's a "road" known as the 'Yellowstone Trail' passed through Portage County on its way to Puget Sound. This road originated in Chicago taking a scenic path through Wisconsin.
Several articles from the Stevens Point Daily Journal tell the story of Yellowstone Hotel located in Park Ridge, the source of our cabin.
Stevens Point Daily Journal, Monday, May 26, 1930 - page 10
Viertel Opens 30 Room Hotel at Tourist Camp.
The Yellowstone hotel has been designated as the name for a new building just completed by Ernest Viertel on Highway 10, a short distance east of the city limits, and which will be open for public inspection Tuesday evening and all day Wednesday. It will be used for rooming purposes exclusively in connection with the tourist camp conducted for the past several years by Mr. Viertel, provision having been made for serving meals at the Bar-B-Q on the same grounds.
The new building, simulating log construction, was erected under the foremanship of Arthur Emmerson, is two stories high and covers ground space 35 by 92 feet. It is divided into 30 guest rooms and is built over a full basement in which is placed a hot air heating plant, said to be one of the largest in central or northern Wisconsin. The equipment includes four hot and cold showers. Construction was started last fall and progressed all through the winter months.
In addition to the new hotel, Mr. Viertel has 15 cottages at his camp and is constantly adding to his camping space.
He especially invites his Stevens Point friends to visit the place tomorrow night or Wednesday.
Stevens Point Daily Journal, Saturday, May 18, 1940 - page 1
Yellowstone Hotel Sold by Viertels.
Sale of the Yellowstone hotel and barbecue by Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Viertel, Sr., to Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Turzinski, Park Ridge, was revealed today in records filed in the register of deeds office. Mr. and Mrs. Turzinski will take possession on May 20, of the hotel and on July 1, of the barbecue stand. The Viertels will continue to operate a tourist camp on the property this summer. They have operated the hotel and cabins for 15 years. The tourist camp is said to be the oldest in Wisconsin.
Stevens Point Daily Journal, Tuesday, August 3, 1971 -- Page 3
End of the Yellowstone
The Yellowstone Motel in Park Ridge is coming down. Norman C. Bader, the owner, is having it razed to make a parking lot for his Little Joe’s Drinking Establishment next door. The Yellowstone was built in the late 1920’s by Ernest Viertel, who platted the first lots in Park Ridge. Shortly before that, he had built what is now Little Joe’s, then a barbecue place catering to tourists. The Yellowstone was named after the old Yellowstone Trail, a post -- World War I tourist route leading from the East to Yellowstone Park. In this area, it roughly followed the route of present day Highway 10, and was marked by yellow bands painted on trees and telephone poles.
The cabin we have is not an original cabin built about 1925, but one that replaced them before May 1940. Our cabin was subsequently moved to Post Road between Plover and Stevens Point and became part of Burr Oaks Motel. The Society was able to salvage one of these to use as an office building at the Park.
We thank Alice Ridge of UWSP for her research.