Follow the Civil War trail & trials of James Allison "Cap" Colehour through his three year enlistment.

The Prospect House, a Georgian-style "mansion", is a treasure in its own right. Cap Colehour built the first house in 1882, based on architectural drawings from his home in Chicago. In 1886 Cap built an addition onto his house and began to offer his home, which he then called "The Prospect Inn", as a seasonal resort. He operated the resort until 1924 when his wife made him retire at age 82. The Prospect Inn was perhaps the first and largest resort in the lakes area, operating for 38 years. Cap’s daughter, Kathrina, and her husband, Ernest Wilkins, remodeled the interior five years later, in 1929. The house’s furnishings and décor have not been changed since that time.

Continually inhabited by descendants of Cap Colehour since 1882, the Prospect House features the Civil War Museum in the lower level. Century old trees define the grounds where the Prospect House was originally built and remains today as a historical site in Battle Lake, Minnesota. Historical markers around the yard tell the story of the Prospect House.

Picture of Prospect House

Civil War Museum

James A. Colehour enlisted for Civil War service in 1862, along with his brother, with Company I, 92nd Illinois Volunteer Infantry and served until the end of the war. You can view his uniform sleeves with the visible holes where he was shot twice. You will be able to follow the map of his unit during the war including the Battle of Chickamauga, where he was wounded, and Sherman's March to the Sea. Cap's collection of Lincoln memorabilia shows his patriotism to our 16th President. You will be able to view Cap's collection of Civil War items and many pictures and articles. This Museum is the highlight of the tour!

Museum Rifle

  Watch the amazing family story of a Civil War veteran at the Prospect House Museum in Battle Lake.

  Jason Davis of KSTP Channel 5 On The Road series comments: "One of Minnesota's latest museums is an unusual collection in Battle Lake. It's really an opportunity to visit a house that built by a civil war veteran that has been lived in continuously since 1882. And everything the family owned or collected, including an amazing display of rare civil war souvenirs and mementos is still there!It's current owner Jay Johnson, the great grandson of the builder "Cap" Colehour, shows us around the home that became a hotel that is now the "Prospect House & Civil War Museum."

  Steve Henning of Lakes Country Living has filmed and edited a 14 minute documentary about the Prospect House and Civil War Museum that is available on YouTube. Click on the picture to view the film.