Eisenbahn State Trail

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The Eisenbahn State Trail is a Wisconsin trail that runs through parts of Washington County and Fond Du Lac County. It is a 25 mile long trail that runs through the city of West Bend and the villages of Kewaskum, Campbellsport, and Eden. The trail was formerly a railroad that stretched from Chicago to the North Western part of the state. The trail got the name Eisenbahn from the German word for "iron road" and "railroad". [1]

Eisenbahn Trail
This is an image of the Eisenbahn State Trail in Wisconsin [2]. Source: Trails

History of Eisenbahn State Trail

The Eisenbahn State Trail used to be a Fox Valley railroad. The railroad was abandoned so it was turned into a long trail for recreational use. The trail is fairly new, as it was only opened in 2005. [3] [4] While walking through the trail, it was easy to find pieces of the railroads tracks left over from the long 25 mile stretch. The Eisenbahn is now a recreational trail used for walking, biking, and other outdoor activities. In the winter, use of ATVs and snowmobiles are permitted if the ground is frozen. The trail adds year round beauty as it runs through the Ice Age National Scenic Trail and the Kettle Moraine State Forest. [5] There are a few simple rules to follow while on the trail. 1) treat everyone on the trail respect no matter their speed or level they are going at 2) do not stray from the trails 3) stay on the right side of the trail and use the left side to make passes 4) make sure to give others room and watch out for others 5) pick up your trash 6) do not go on private property 7) animals need to be on at least 6 feet leashes at all times 8) leave animals, plants, and nature alone 9) keep at a safe speed 10) only cross where there are signs for crossing. [6]

West Bend

Right in the middle of Fond Du Lac and Milwakuee, West Bend was made into a town in the year of 1885. The land was inhabited by the Menominee and Potawatomi before European settlers came to this southeastern part of the state of Wisconsin. With the Milwaukee River flowing through the land, it made the land a big point of attraction. [7]


The village of Kewaskum, also known as the "Gateway to the Kettle Moraine State Forest", was founded in the year 1852. The village gets its name from Chief Kewaskum of the Potawatomi tribe.

The village of Kewaskum is popularly know for the Kettle Moraine State Forest. This state park has 30,000 acres that extends for over 30 miles through the counties of Washington, Fond Du Lac, and Sheboygan. [8] The 30,000 acres offers many fun outdoor activities such as walking the beautiful trails, hiking, biking, riding horses, fishing, hunting, camping, and many other activities. Hunting, however, is not allowed on the trails.


Campbellsport is a village in Fond Du Lac county that was built upon the Milwaukee River. The land was settled in 1845 by John Howell from Waukesha and Ludin Crouch from New York. The village of Campbellsport was built in the town of Ashford in 1872. Campbellsport was named after the farmer Stuart Campbell. The Air Line railway was built on the land owned by Campbell, which is why it was named after him. After being abandoned, this same Air Line railway was made into the Eisenbahn State Trail. [9]

Eisenbahn Bridge
This image shows one of the many bridges on the Eisenbahn State Trail [10]. Source: Bridge


The small town of Eden was settled in the year 1843. The very first person who settled in the village was Ebenezer Dacon. Then around 1845 two men, Joseph Carr and Adam Holiday, settled shortly after Dacon. More and more people started settling after this. The town of Eden was settled by people of Irish, New England, and Germany descent. In 1847 Adam Holiday and his wife had a daughter, who was the first white child that was born in the village of Eden. During this time, most of the land in Eden was used for fields and growing crops. There was a lot of debate over what the town's name should be, but in 1847 everyone decided the town would be named Eden. [11]


  1. "Wisconsin State Park System" (2016) http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/parks/name/eisenbahn/, Accessed May 2, 2017
  2. "Eisenbahn State Trail Wisconsin" https://www.traillink.com/trail/eisenbahn-state-trail/, Accessed May 9, 2017
  3. "Fond Du Lac County Wisconsin" http://www.fdlco.wi.gov/departments/departments-n-z/parks-trails/recreation-trails/eisenbahn-state-park-trail, Accessed May 2, 2017
  4. "Chuck's Adventures" http://chucksadventures.blogspot.com/2010/08/biking-wisconsins-eisenbahn-state-trail.html, Accessed May 2, 2017
  5. "Wisconsin State Park System" (2016) http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/parks/name/eisenbahn/, Accessed May 2, 2017
  6. "Washington County Eisenbahn State Trail" http://www.co.washington.wi.us/departments.iml?Detail=150 Accessed May 5, 2017
  7. "City of West Bend, West Bend History" http://www.ci.west-bend.wi.us/WB-History/, Accessed May 2, 2017
  8. "Wisconsin State Park System Kettle Moraine State Forest - Northern Unit" http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/parks/name/kmn/, Accessed May 5, 2017
  9. "Campbellsport News Early History of Village Told by H. Wrucke (March 24, 1952) http://www.wlhn.org/fond_du_lac/towns/scrapbook/1952_earlyhistory_ak.htm Accessed May 2, 2017
  10. "FDL Focus" http://www.fdlfocus.com/blog/wild-goose-trail/, Accessed May 9, 2017
  11. http://www.wlhn.org/fond_du_lac/communities/eden/history_sievers.htm Accessed May 9, 2017

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