Tester and Polin General Merchandise Store
Also known as Riverside Gallery 215 N. Main St., Alma
Significant Year: 1861.
Area of Significance: Exploration/Settlement, Architecture, Commerce.
Period of Significance: 1850-1874.
Historic Function: Commerce/Trade, Domestic.
Historic Sub-function: Department Store, Single Dwelling
Current Function: Commerce/Trade, Domestic.
Current Sub-function: Single Dwelling, Specialty Store
The Gallery House Bed and Breakfast (or Tester and Polin)
is a lovely and intriguing home established in 1861, worthy of its listing on the National Register of Historic Places. The living room, dining room and grand front deck overlook the Mighty Mississippi. A sighting of eagles in their favorite tree or fishing, passage of the Delta, Mississippi or American Queen riverboats or towboats and spectacular sunsets generate wonderful memories. Jan's multi-course gourmet breakfast and the expanding art collection are also special features of a stay at The Gallery House.
Owner(s): Jan Hopkins.Open Since: 1985 with two rooms,.215 N. Main Street, P.O.Box 55, Alma, Wisconsin 54610, United States.tel: 608/685-4975 fax: 608/685-4977 e-mail: email@example.com
History of Alma, Wisconsin.
In 1848, two young Swiss men arrived in this area to cut the wood which would be used to fuel the steamboats which traveled the Mississippi River. They built a small shack and decided to stay. Others soon followed these early settlers. Until 1857, the newcomers were mostly Swiss immigrants. Perhaps the geographical features of this area reminded them of their native Switzerland. Twelve Mile Bluff was the original name (assigned by pilots of steamboats as they used a prominent cliff as a guide on dark nights) for the settlement.