Quonset Hut - Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member Archived2012
N 43° 50.114 W 088° 00.869
16T E 418439 N 4854072
Quick Description: Step back in time. This Quonset Hut was once the 5th Wheel restaurant back in the 50's and 60's.
Location: Wisconsin, United States
Date Posted: 10/8/2007 7:25:11 PM
Waymark Code: WM2BVF
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Team Farkle 7
Views: 48

Long Description:
The 5th Wheel began as a legacy from WWII. After the war Quonset Huts, used by the Army, were widely advertised as "ideal for a business". Ranging in size from 20 to 40 feet wide they were adaptable for most any business a person might want to start. In 1948, Edward "Ted" Meinert and his wife Bertha "Red" opened their business along the then busy Highway 57 on the north side of Elkhart Lake and called it The 5th Wheel. Although small, it soon had quite a bit of business, and the large parking lot could accommodate the cars.
In March 1952 Ted and Red sold their Quonset restaurant to Lamar and Jack Nohl. The brothers, from Sheboygan, had operated "Lamar's Lunch" on Calumet Drive for four years and prior to that had been at the "Stage Door Canteen" in back of the Wisconsin Theatre in Sheboygan.
In 1954 "Argosy Magazine" listed the "Fifth Wheel" as one of the 300 best diners in America, no small accomplishment. In 1955 they were named as the "Dealer of the Week" by the Kiel Record. Not bad for a restaurant that featured low cost meals and charcoal grilled food for hungry motorists.
The restaurant fell victim to progress however, when Highway 57 became Highway 67. The new Highway 57 bypassed Elkhart Lake altogether and with it the traffic which the place needed. It became just another local restaurant with occassional motorists stopping in. Eventually it closed but still lives in our "charcoal memories."

(Source: A Photographic History of Elkhart Lake, Peter Laun)
Brick front.

Hut Type: Stran-Steel Quonset 24

Year of fabrication (if known): 1948

Is the Quonset Hut currently in use?: Yes

Physical Address:
Hwy 67
Elkhart Lake, WI USA

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