Villa Louis

Posted by Doug Shidell, November 11th, 2020

The Fourth Ward in Prairie du Chien was a neighborhood on Feriole Island in the Mississippi River. After a massive flood in 1965 nearly wiped out the neighborhood, many families abandoned their homes and left the island. Two years later another flood inundated the island. All but one of the homes was removed and the island became a park.

Villa Louis, an historic estate sits on high ground on the island as does the Historic Dousman Hotel below.

Historic Dousman Hotel, now called the Dousman House
Dousman House as seen from a kayak on the flooded Feriole Island
Brick walk and flooded basement of the Dousman House

Heavy rain in 2019 flooded the island again, so I toured it by kayak. The garage door for a park board storage building was left open, so I paddled in and took pictures.

Inside a park board storage building on Feriole Island
Outdoor chairs on Feriole Island, Prairie du Chien

The Fourth Ward and nearby Wyalusing State Park play an important role in my novel “On His Own Terms.”

Filed under: OHOT News, Paddlesports

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