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The Painted Forest...Modern Woodmen of America


Around 1900 an intinerate painter named Ernest Hupeden was hired by The Modern Woodmen of America to paint the story of the group's meetings complete with initation rites. The walls are covered with messages showing figures that illustrate how good a life you can have if you join the fellowship. The MWA, like many fraternal organizations of the time, used practices which seem strange today. They would ride a goat and be pushed around the room. The initate would have to wear a mask, get his lungs checked, wear red/blue eye goggles, and do many other exercises to prove his commitment to the group.

A fascinating place. Very Northwoods. Worth the trip.

Location: Valton, Wisconsin

On Hwy EE in Iowa County. When you reach Valton the white MWA building is one block off EE. Open Saturdays 1 to 3 from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Please check the Edgewood College website to verify times.

website by LuLu Fry

Thanks for stopping by.

Visionary Artists of Wisconsin

Dr Evermor & His Forevertron
Birdman Ellis Nelson
LuLu's Art-O-Rama
Wegner Grotto
Driftless Wisconsin (self-guided) Art Tour
The Painted Forest