The Logging Years

The Logging Years

The logging companies came to the Star Lake area in the late 1880’s and by 1895 had built Camp 1, which consisted of a large sawmill, our Milltown - equipped with a planing mill, 84 company houses for married employees, a large boarding house for single employees, two warehouses, a large general store, a butcher shop, a schoolhouse and resident physician. By 1904, other logging companies came to Star Lake and set up 24 additional camps and by 1907 had cut down most of the trees and left just a few remnants behind. The Star Lake Mill alone took over four hundred million board feet of logs out of the Star Lake area.

In 1907, the last log, draped in an American flag, went out of Star Lake and soon after, Camp 1 was closed. The mill and all but the store closed. The employees of the mill, loggers, their families and homes were put on the train and shipped off to the next logging community and Star Lake became a ghost town overnight.

Logging Photos

Star Lake is stuck in time.

Star Lake is a quaint community located in the heart of the Northern Highland American Legion State Forest in the upper most part of Wisconsin. The area contains very little private land and thus is protected from encroaching development.

Oddly enough, Star Lake is still much the same today as it was after the Milltown moved out in 1907. The only real differences – the houses and railroad are gone, the trees have grown back and our historic bait shop is closed for business.

Support FOSL

Consider making a donation to the Friends of Star Lake

We are thrilled to be able to help preserve Star Lake’s rich history. The Schoolhouse, Bait Shop and Old Milltown Depot have all been labors of love. And, the more we work on these projects, the more excited we become.

Please let us know if you or your family members are interested in helping us fund the Old Milltown Depot or our college scholarship program. The entire Board is incredibly grateful for the community’s support and helping us preserve what is so special about Star Lake.