Fort Atkinson

Home to the fort opened by Brigadier General Henry Atkinson, the small town of Fort Atkinson, Iowa welcomes those who wish to enjoy the historic community. Though only a community of roughly 350 people, the attraction sites within town borders are one-of-a-kind, as is the town’s annual Rendezvous Days Festival.

While in Fort Atkinson, it’s worth the time to stop by the Fort Atkinson State Preserve, the neutral ground of the Winnebago Indians following their removal from Wisconsin in 1840. The fort provided the Winnebago with protection from other tribes including the Sioux, Sauk, and the Fox as well as white intruders who would trespass on Indian lands.

A self-guided walking tour of the fort will give visitors a view of what life was like in the 1840s as they observe the stockade and main gate, the barracks, a guard house, a quarry, officers’ quarters, a powder magazine, as well as a root house, an ice house, and laundress house. Also included are a carpenter shop, bake house, blacksmith shop, quartermaster’s office, granary, and stables.

Lake Meyer is also an important feature of Fort Atkinson’s geography. The 156 acre park houses the County Conservation Board’s headquarters. Lake Meyer offers a great spot for camping, whether tent or trailer, and offers amenities including drinking water, showers, and restrooms. And don’t forget the outdoor recreation of skiing, hiking trails, picnicking areas, or taking advantage of the 38-acre lake!