Chippewa's Spring Water On The Yellowstone Trail
In Wisconsin, United States
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This is a place that travelers on the Yellowstone Trail would have stopped to get a cool drink of water and fill up the radiators of their Model T's. Earlier, In 1700 a French explorer, Pierre LeSueur, discovered the Spring and recorded in his journal how it was here that he heard the legend of Hiawatha. American poet Ezra Pound later used this fact as the basis of a poem romanticizing Chippewa Spring water as the love potion with which Hiawatha wooed the beautiful Minnehaha.
Over 500 million years ago the North American Midwest was covered by a great inland sea that laid down virgin white Cambrian sandstone. As the sea filled in, most of this sandstone became buried thousands of feet below the surface. The rim of this sea, however, remained exposed for thousands of years. Little by little, the rim was scraped away by glaciers until a single outcropping remained. This outcropping is the source of the Chippewa Spring....a hillside pouring forth crystal clear, naturally pure spring water, "Earth's Perfect Water".
In 1887, Wisconsin Governor Thaddeus Pound became convinced it was Chippewa Spring Water that had restored his health. He bought the surrounding land and turned it into a model farm, complete with vineyards, gardens, and walking paths. He founded the Chippewa Springs Health Club in 1889. In 1890 the Spring House was built to protect the Spring. Chippewa Spring water was shipped to the coasts on the railroad dining cars and was the official water in Chicago hospitals.
In 1993 a "Save the Spring House" restoration project was undertaken, so the historic Spring House is still there. Complete with glass floor, underground lighting, and trillium pathway, the project was rededicated by Governor Tommy Thompson during Pure Water Days, 100 years to the day of its original dedication. In recent years, the Spring House has been neglected, and the nearby trails are overgrown and no longer used. It is on these trails you will find the cache.
This is one of several caches I have placed along the route of the historic Yellowstone Trail. The trail is a historic motor route that went across Wisconsin from 1918 to 1930. The Wisconsin portion of the Yellowstone Trail is 406 miles long, starting at the state line south of Kenosha and going north, and then west to Hudson. The Wisconsin segment is just a part of one of America’s first transcontinental auto routes, a 3,754-mile long road that started in Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts and went to Puget Sound, Washington.
Before there were numbered highways in the United States there were names attached to roads to help motorists navigate from town to town or from county to county. Hailed as being “A Good Road from Plymouth Rock to Puget Sound,” the Yellowstone Trail began as a 25-mile stretch of road near Ipswitch, South Dakota. In October 1912, Mr. J. W. Parmley formed the Yellowstone Trail Association. By 1917 the Yellowstone Trail had grown to become the main auto route for those travelling from the East Coast to Yellowstone National Park and the Pacific Northwest.
More information on the Yellowstone Trail, including maps can be found at
INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE MULTI: At the coordinates given above you will find the Spring House. From the Spring House you will want to walk 55 feet WSW (250 degrees). At that point you will find the cache.
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Last Updated: on 3/27/2014 11:39:50 AM Pacific Daylight Time (6:39 PM GMT)
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum