Building for the Future:
Meeme House Inn Project
As immigrants came to Manitowoc County and roads become well traveled, stagecoach stops were built throughout the state. One of these stops, the Meeme House, still stands today. Built around 1855, the Meeme House Inn was located along the Green Bay Road. It was built by farmer and new immigrant, Michael Herr. The typical rate was around $1 a day, which included supper, lodging, breakfast and feed and stabling for a team of horses. The building had several small overnight rooms, a tavern on the first floor and a large beautiful ballroom on the second. Voting also took place inside until a new poll house was built in 1900.
It has been said that during the Civil War a rally took place in the ballroom and the next day the Civil War volunteers walked to Manitowoc to join the unit. The Meeme House Inn was owned by the Herr family until 1906 when it was purchased by Peter DeGrott. DeGrott operated the Inn until 1909 when it was sold to Joe Schwartz. After Joe's death in 1947, his wife Minnie ran the tavern until 1955. The Meeme House Tavern was then passed on to their daughter, Valeria, and become well known as Sessler's Meeme House.
In October, 2013 the Manitowoc County Historical Society, a private non-profit organization, purchased the Sessler's Meeme House Inn property to preserve and share the stories of the structures.
The Meeme House Inn, and its outbuildings, will be
restored to its glory in 1915, under the ownership of Joe Schwartz. The historic structure will serve as in interactive living history museum, where visitors of all ages can be transported back in time and discover the Meeme House Inn, its livery, and poll house, in operation.
After the culmination of years of planning and fundraising, the structure will now begin its next phase of restoration. This stagecoach inn, and its poll house and livery stable, is certain to bring great and lasting benefits both to the Museum’s membership and the region it serves.
Creating and sustaining an experience like we offer at the Manitowoc County Historical Society is not without challenges. As with most non-profit organizations, we are understaffed, underfunded, and have to-do lists miles long. In order to continue providing the powerful, relevant
experiences that visitors cannot find anywhere else, we are trusting in you. The truth is, none of this exists without your generous donations.
To make this dream a reality, we need you. The Meeme House Inn Restoration project needs your financial contributions to become a place where our history lives for today and generations to come. Together we can discover our past to dream our bright future.