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Logging & Lumber Era.

From 1904, Fosterville to 1933, Winegar.

A "Company Town" was an economic institution that was part of the market for labor.

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Click on anyone of the above coins for more information about the Company Town of Fosterville/Winegar.

Company Store

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This is picturesque country; the main features of which are the many lakes in the vicinity.  A straight-line north and ½ mile east of Fosterville/Winegar (now Presque Isle) would pass through a half dozen lakes including State Line, Horse Head, Armour and Crab lake, the furthest south and the largest. Beyond to the east and southeast are many others. While in

the southwest is Presque Isle Lake, one of the most noted in the county for its scenes of natural beauty. Indeed beautiful scenery may be found around all these lakes, and on the Presque Isle River.

Teamster service was available from the C&N-W Ry depot to a vacation home or resort where roads were available.


Below are the thoroughfares of the early days of Winegar/Fosterville when there were no roads. These waterways took visitors to their vacation homes and resorts before roads. This picture on the right could have been taken a 100 years ago, as it was today, but with huge trees which have since been sawed into lumber by the different Vilas County Sawmills. 

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William S. Winegar (1854-1927), came to Fosterville, from Grand Rapids, MI in 1910. “Big Bill", was the second President of the VCLCo.  W. S. Winegar and his father were two of  the original VCLCo stockholders.

Bill owned a cottage on Peaceful Isle in Oxbow Lake where he spent weekends to weeks at a time. He vacationed in Miami, Florida. Lumber barons in northern Wisconsin had to travel quite a distance to spend their profits.

The C.&N.-W. Ry. connected Fosterville, Winegar and Presque Isle with Ashland, Chicago, Mercer, Milwaukee & …..

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This page reviews the delivering of; Employees, Residents and Tourists while shipping the lumber that built the midwest of the USA.

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Vilas County Lumber Co. (VCLCo) Sawmill- From 1904 Fosterville to 1933 Winegar.

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Are you related to any of these 200 people who; worked in the different Sawmills, County and Township Officials, Teachers Store Owners and ...............

.pdf  link.

.pdf  link.

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World War I, was a global war that lasted from 1914 to 1918. In 1917 Winegar, Wisconsin started sending brave men to fight the European Central Powers. On Saturday and Sunday, October 4th and 5th, 1919 residents of Winegar celebrated their homecoming.

The only cemetery between Winchester and Fosterville/Winegar.

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Notable Quotable Events.

1848     May 29, Wisconsin becomes the 38th US state.

1893    Vilas County, WI (township of Presque Isle) set off from Oneida Co.

1903    January, 07 the first town named Presque Isle, WI was formed. (located on what is now County Road                “W” about 3 miles west of the present Presque Isle.)

1905    John J. Foster christened the area around the Vilas County Lumber Co. Sawmill; Fosterville,                             WI. Fire wiped out the town that autumn leaving the depot and one home.

1906    Initial one-room wood school house built. US Post Office Department records establish Fosterville.

1910    W. S. Winegar changed the name of the village to “Winegar”, WI.

1911     First forest rangers were appointed to protect forest lands from fire.

1913    US Post Office Department records establish Winegar, WI.

1914     Second two-room school house built in Winegar.

1923     May 5, the original town of Presque Isle, WI dissolved.

1930's   …… got out of control and the village of Winegar, WI was surrounded by flames.

1939   Third concrete block school house in Winegar.

1946    American Legion Winegar Post 480 establised.

1949    Conservation Service establishes Walleye Rearing Ponds.

195?    Chamber of Commerce formed; post-war resort boom.

1955    Village of Winegar renamed to Presque Isle, WI by a voice vote of the towns people. 

1956    First in county Township Zoning insures protective waterfront development (’59 ???)

1966    Snowmobile trails developed, Sno-Bunnies Club formed, local ski trails operate.

1978    Annual Country Fair & “Wisconsin’s Last Wilderness” inaugurated by Chamber.

1970's  Community Center built housing Library, Town Office, meeting rooms.

1973    Presque Isle Lions Club chartered.

1980   Presque Isle Heritage Society formed.

2000  Catherine Wolter Wilderness Area formed & managed by The Nature Conservancy.

2013   Van Vliet Hemlocks State Natural Area designated.

2015 Pipke Park formed on site of VCLC Sawmill pond & Walleye rearing ponds.

2018   Wilderness Veterans Memorial Flame built & inaugurated.

To submit "Notable Quotable Events," contact the Presque Isle Heritage Society.

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