Saturday, July 8, 2017

(44) A Lush and Beautiful State,

July 7, 2017
Winthrop Harbor, Illinois to
Marshfield, Wisconsin

After a good nights sleep we awoke and drove the 50 yards or so to the border and crossed into Wisconsin.

We stayed on the old Yellowstone Trail which is on the Sheridan Road along the shores of Lake Michigan. We drove north to Kenosha, Wisconsin to have breakfast with Mark Mowbray,  the executive director of the Yellowstone Trail organization. It was great to finally meet Mark. I've talked with him several times by telephone and he is always been very helpful. When he discovered that I had left my magnetic door signs for the car in the Ranchero, in California, he loaned me his set. I will mail them back at the end of the trip.

Mark and I Transferring the "gang colors" to the Mustang.

After a great breakfast, Mark enlightened Linda and I about the Yellowstone Trail through Wisconsin. He also provided us with some publications which are available in Wisconsin and which gave detailed information about the trail in this state. This will be a great help as I do not have nearly as much information concerning the Yellowstone Trail as I have for the Lincoln Highway.

This was the first time I met Mark in person, but I felt like we were old friends. Mark's father owned the Yellowstone garage in North Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Mark grew up working in the garage alongside his dad. His dad encouraged him to go to college and Mark decided that was pretty good advice. Mark eventually earned a Masters degree and taught vocational education at the college level. After that he went to work for an engineering company for the rest of his career. Every summer Mark takes a long road trip, usually on the Yellowstone Trail, and he is very knowledgeable about the trail.  

After breakfast we made our farewells and then Linda and I continued north along the Yellowstone Trail on the shores of Lake Michigan. We viewed some of the Lakeside mansions in Kenosha and Racine. Kenosha was an automobile town. Most recently, Chrysler had a plant here which they acquired along with American Motors who made Rambler. American Motors came about from a merger of Nash and Hudson. Nash was once the Jeffery Motor Company. Now it is all gone.

Early Motel in Kenosha

Restored street cars run on a scenic 2 mile loop along
the shore of Lake Michigan. This one is painted
with a San Francisco "Muni" paint scheme.

One of several Lakeside Mansions

From Kenosha, we drove to Racine, Wisconsin. In Racine we looked at the statue of President and Mrs. Lincoln. This is the only statue of Mary Todd Lincoln known to exist. She had visited Racine in 1867 to check out schools for son Tad. She must have made a good impression.

President and Mrs. Lincoln

We then continued our way into Milwaukee. Here the traffic was not nearly as bad as what we had seen in Chicago and Cleveland. But I still didn't enjoy it.

The Streets of Milwaukee 

In Milwaukee we viewed the Basilica of St. Josaphat and also got a look at the world's largest 4-sided clock tower.

Basilica of St. Josaphat, Milwaukee. 

World's Largest 4 sided clock tower.

Milwaukee is also known as the cream city, not for milk, but for all the white bricks used on the buildings. These bricks are a result of the clays which have a unique composition result in a very good and unique white brick. They once were shipped from this region of Wisconsin all over the world.

From Milwaukee we continued on the Yellowstone Trail to Fond du Lac and North Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. In North Fond du Lac we viewed the Yellowstone garage were Mark Mowbray once worked with his father.

Former Yellowstone Garage in North Fond du Lac, Wisconsin
From Fond du Lac we drove to Oshkosh. Oshkosh is located in Winnebago County, on the shores of Lake Winnebago. As Fozzie Bear joked in the movie A Muppet Family Christmas, "If you're there in  winter you need to be take care that you don't freeze your Winnebago."                                                

Main Street, Oshkosh, Wi.

Oshkosh is known for more than bib overalls and children's clothes. It was also a great dairy distribution point. Products from Oshkosh were shipped from the Great Lakes to points all over the United States.

North Park, Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

After Oshkosh we proceeded west. We diverted from the Yellowstone Trail and drove up to the small town of Hortonville to have dinner at Charlie's diner.

This diner was featured in a recent article in American Road Magazine. After dinner we continued driving west until we reached the town of Marshfield, where we spent the night.


  1. A couple signs I noticed in your pictures today. Funny that you are on the Yellowstone Trail, yet your shot of the basilica shows a Lincoln street sign, and Lincoln Village.

    Also, the "Wisconsin Welcomes You" sign. The "Open for Business" part looks like a separate piece. I can just imagine a state worker arriving every morning and evening to "flip" it over. "Sorry, we are closed now"

  2. Must have been lovely traveling along those lakes... like being at the ocean! Some interesting architecture in Milwaukee.