Old Muskego Church – Saint Paul, Minnesota - Atlas Obscura

Old Muskego Church

A Norwegian church that was built before Wisconsin was even a state has been entirely moved to a nicer spot. 


First constructed in 1844 in the wilderness of Wind Lake, Wisconsin, the Old Muskego Church was once of the first in the area, built by Norwegian settlers who had not even been invited to join the Union yet, and now over a hundred years later the wooden church still stands in a new home on a modern Lutheran campus. 

At the time of its building, the Muskego church was the first and only Norwegian Luthern church in the young nation serving a congregation of almost 300 worshippers. After being built by the original Muskego settlers, the church was in service for 25 years before the growing population outstripped the space in the old church and it was left behind for a newer space. The church building was then sold to a farmer who briefly used the structure as a barn, although this life also proved fairly brief. Come 1904, the now deteriorating building was purchased by the United Norwegian Lutheran Church in America who carefully took apart the entire building and shipped it to the burgeoning metropolis of St. Paul where it was expertly reconstructed on the campus of the Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Today the site is still maintained and continually restored as a protected historic site. It is mainly used for weddings and special rental functions, but its hundreds of years of service have ensured that the legacy of America’s Norwegian settlers will not be forgotten.  

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