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Wisconsin National Register of Historic Places

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Indianapolis Outing Club (MJ Hettinga photo, 2003)

Indianapolis Outing Club main house (MJ Hettinga photo, 2003)

Indianapolis Outing Club main house interior (MJ Hettinga photo, 2003)

Indianapolis Outing Club boathouse (MJ Hettinga photo, 2003)

Indianapolis Outing Club
Town of Three Lakes, Oneida County, Wisconsin
Date of Construction: 1902

The Indianapolis Outing Club was formed at a time when tourism began to replace farming and logging as the leading industry of Wisconsin's northwoods. Farmers, frustrated with poor soil and a short growing season, began building small tourist cabins on their farms. As resorts sprang up, wealthy tourists followed, bringing with them the capital that revitalized the northern economy. From 1890 to 1920, western Vilas and northwestern Oneida counties had the greatest concentration of commercial resorts in the Upper Great Lakes.

Hunting, fishing, and relaxing in Wisconsin┐s northwoods were the order of the day for the Indianapolis Outing Club. In 1902, prominent businessmen from southern Indiana and Kentucky purchased 8 acres of mature woodland near Three Lakes. Preferring the exclusivity of a private club to more public resort life, the Indiana Outing Club was an alternative form of recreational development. Located along 800 feet of frontage on Planting Ground Lake, the club provided its members with an idyllic site for their recreational activities.There they built a two-story clubhouse, two guesthouses, and a wet boathouse.

Club members continued to vacation there until economic difficulties led to the club's foreclosure and sale to a single owner. Like similar clubs, it became victim of a trend towards the construction of private summer residences along area lakes.

The buildings of the Indianapolis Outing Club are private property. Please respect the privacy of the owners.


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