Many years ago we were taking the Methodist confirmation kids to Minneapolis for a convention when one of the church leaders (Roger Tanquist) took us on a side trip to Belle Plaine, Minnesota.  He was about to show all of us the 2-story outhouse.  The kids were in awe.  The only outhouses they had ever seen were the ones abandoned on Martin County farms that they “naughtily” tipped over at Halloween.

The original house was built by Sandford Hooper in 1871.  He sold it to Samuel Bowler, founder of the State Bank of Belle Plaine and lumber-yard owner in 1886.  In order to accommodate his large family, Bowler added a new kitchen, buttery and the five-hole, two-story outhouse that is connected to the house via a skyway.  If you’re traveling along HWY 169 near Belle Plaine, Minnesota, it’s worth a 15 minute side trip to see what is fondly referred to as Belle Plaine’s ”Sky-Crapper”.

Hooper-Bowler-Hillstrom House 1
Hooper-Bowler-Hillstrom Outhouse

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