History Sites – Ellsworth (city of)
Ellsworth Co-op Creamery
232 N. Wallace Street
This east side business was organized in 1908 by area dairy farmers. By the 1930s, it produced 1.6 million pounds of butter annually. It changed its production to include 10,000 pounds of edible milk powder during World War II. It continues to successfully produce butter, cheese and it’s famous cheese curds that brought the “Cheese Curd Capital of the World” name to Ellsworth. Today’s marketing has placed Ellsworth Cheese curds in stores all over the country.
Ellsworth Presbyterian Church
509 W. Main Street
The church, located on the community’s first burial site after the interred were moved to Maple Grove Cemetery, was built in 1895 by the First United Presbyterian congregation. The interior was extensively remodeled in 1959, and an addition added.
Ellsworth United Methodist Church
154 S. Plum Street
The property on which the church stands was purchased in 1867 for the sole purpose of providing a place of worship. The building, dedicated in 1874 as the Methodist Episcopal Church, was raised up in 1925 in order to construct a new basement and social rooms. The interior and exterior have been refurbished several times. The church currently is owned and used by the Ellsworth VFW Post 9060.
Old Pierce County Home and Cemetery
Cross Town Road east of Hwy 65
In 1868, the Pierce County board purchased a parcel of land northwest of the village on which to build a home for the county’s indigent. A resident’s cemetery was added west of the main building. The original frame building was demolished in 1887 to make way for a larger facility, and it’s wood used for outbuildings. The land, called the “Sunny Acres Experimental Farm” in the 1950s, was used for decades to support the operation. The county sold the property and building in 1958, long known as the “poor farm”, for use as a private nursing home. The facility lasted only a few years. The property has been privately owned since that time.
Old St. John’s Episcopal Church
253 S. Piety St.
Now owned by Living Waters Christian Fellowship, this attractive English style stone church was built by the late Mark and Mary Sanderson and fellow Episcopalians between 1900 and 1913. Walls at the bottom are five feet thick. It’s bell was cast at Sheffield, England in 1854. The stonework contains rock from various places in the world, and the Sandersons’ names can be found on one of it’s buttresses. More about the building’s history can be found in the 1962 Centennial publication, Ellsworth 1862-1962 Historical Album and Program Book.
Pierce County Courthouse
414 W. Main Street
Located on one of the highest points in Pierce County, this building replaced four smaller structures, made respectively of wood, log, frame and brick. It was designed in Classical Revival style by architectural partners, Buechner & Orth, and built by St. Paul contractor Charles Skooglun. The building was completed in 1905. It’s dome ceiling contains restored, hand painted scenes of county history.
Pierce County Fairgrounds
364 N. Maple Street
The fairgrounds have been the site of annual county-wide agricultural fairs since 1884, though earlier fairs had been held since the 1850s in Prescott and other locations. The two-story stock sales pavilion dates back to 1920, when round barn design was considered more efficient for dairy farming than rectangular designs. Efforts are being made to retain it’s original appearance.