VILLAGE OF ELAND -- From Shawano County Centurawno  1853-1953:

The Village of Eland was always a busy railroad center. The Milwaukee Lake Shore and Western built its line through Eland in the late 70's. They also built two miles into Norse, to serve the Nye Lumber Company located there. Later the line was extended from Norse to Wausau, and on to Marshfield, and from Antigo north.

Eland, then known as Eland Junction, became a sizeable terminal for freight and passenger trains. The Chicago & Northwestern bought the M.L.S.&W. Ry. In 1893, at which time the lumber and logging business was heavy.

Eland was originally situated in the Township of Birnamwood. It was incorporated as a Village in February, 1908. Eli Elefson was Chairman of the Town Board prior to incorporation.

In the middle 1880's, J. Hamlin Company erected a saw mill. Later another sawmill was built known as the Eland Traffic Company, with N.A. Rideout and W.K. Rideout as owners. They did an extensive logging and lumber business.

The only store in Eland in the middle 1880's was that of E.R. Franklin & Son. After that the Fuller store was established, of which Homer Fuller was the owner.

The first school was built in the late 80's, being a one-room arrangement. This was replaced by a brick structure in 1901. The first teacher was Miss Jennie Cook. E.R. Franklin, Sr., and Chas. Grobbert served on the school board.

The Fuller House was the first hotel erected in Eland. This was a popular place for the train men to stop during their lay-overs.

The first Congregational Church was organized in Eland in 1898. Pastor J. Lloyd Smith, now retired and living in Dallas, Texas, was the first pastor. Services were held in what was known as Franklin Hall, above the Franklin store. A church was built in 1901 with 22 members making up the congregation.

The Zion Lutheran Church of Eland was started about 1898. Services were held at the home of Chas. Trebus. The pastor was the Rev. Otto List, then of Wittenberg's St. Paul's church.

In 1900 five families made up the congregation. They were: Chas. Trebus, Chas. Warning, Gottlieb Kuntz, Carl Panko, and William Lettau.

The land on which a new church was built was donated by Ralph Werner. Most of the work was donated by members and their families. The church was completed in 1901. It is now served by Pastor Cattau of St. Paul's church, Birnamwood.

All Saint's Congregation was organized in the spring of 1912 as a mission at Antigo. The first services were held in the Kutchin Building, later known as the Franklin Building, the present location of the Eland post office. The Rev. Fr. Kolfeol was the pastor.

In the fall of 1912, Mr. Michael Hulehan donated land for a church which was to be called St. Williams. The church was completed in 1913 and was from that time on known as St. William's church. The church became a mission of Tigerton. Stained glass windows were placed in 1930 at a cost of about $1,800.00. This church is the present mission of St. Philomene's of Birnamwood.

A Modern Woodman Lodge was organized in Eland in the early 90's. Ed. S. Hagen was the first clerk of the lodge. Meetings were held above the Rideout Mill store.

Eland also had a Good Templars organization. Its meeting place was above the Franklin store. Lillie Hagen was secretary. This proved to be a very worthy organization.

The old settlers of the 80's were John Schanen, Charles Grobbert, E.R. Franklin, Sr., W.H. Fuller, W.C. Pickering, W.D. House, W.J. Hagen, Chas. Trebus, G.W. Van Echtern, and Charles Huckhasen. Mr. Huckhasen was station agent for the M.L.S.&W. Ry.

In the early 90's came Jas. Hamlin, sawmill owner; Ralph Werner, an active town board member; and J.F. Franklin, who was active in civic affairs and later became postmaster.

Information contributed by:
C.J. Westphal, Supervisor for Village of Eland