In the late 1950's a group of outdoors minded sportsmen felt the Deerfield area needed a club or facility to serve their needs. The general feeling was to obtain a site suitable to build a club house and meeting hall with enough land for a trap shooting range and parking area. Also needed was enough land for a family picnic area and future expansion.
Many people from the area were involved in this endeavor and continually worked for the formation of a gun dub. Out of these dreams the Deerfield Rod and Gun Club was formed when 25 people met at the Deerfield Motor Sales building on May 31,1960. At the next meeting an election of officers was held. Those elected for office were:
President- Richard Severson
Vice President- Paul Nelson
Secretary- Kermit Trinrud
Treasurer- William Peters
Directors- Cephus Gilderhus, Arnold Dahl, Atty. Solon Pierce
A corporation was formed and by-laws drafted on the procedure outlined by Atty. Pierce. At the July 11, 1960 meeting September 11th was chosen for the club's first shoot. A site was chosen one mile north of Nora on the Roger Olson farm. A trap was purchased from Charlie's Tavern on South Broadway for $25.00 and transported to the trap shoot site. The shoot was very successful with gross receipts of $1,983.04 and expenses of $1,192.35 for a profit of $790.00.
At the February 6,1961 meeting a committee reported that a suitable site had been found for the club to purchase. A special meeting was held on February 17,1961 to decide whether to proceed with an offer. There were 45 votes cast, 40 yes and 5 no to proceed. On March 1961 the purchase was completed. The property was obtained from Mrs. Coyle. Eight and one-half acres at a cost of $500.00 and 32 acres purchased from Dorothy Lange at a cost of $3,200.00. Warranty deeds were obtained together with a one rod right of way to Highway BB.
On March 14,1961, $3,000.00 was borrowed from the Bank of Deerfield with Cephus Gilderhus, Arnold Dahl, Ray Simonson, Richard Severson, and Paul Nelson signing the mortgage to guarantee payment.
In 1962 several community service events were held including the Boy Scouts of the Yahara district annual Klondike Derby. There were over 400 scouts, 100 leaders and parents in attendance. Several successful fund raisers including a steer raffle that netted $820.04, a dunk tank at the Deerfield festival with a net profit of $701.20, fall trap shoot $3,188.89, poultry show$448.55. With these successful fund raisers it enabled the club to satisfy the mortgage and a mortgage burning ceremony was held on December 2, 1962. This was considered a super accomplishment as the land was free and clear in only 2 years.
In 1963 a 210 foot well was dug at a cost of $1,117.52. One of the fund raisers to help defray the cost was a chicken barbecue at the state wide trap shoot held at the Madison gun club located on Baxter Road.
In 1964 the basement of the existing 30'x60' building was started. In 1966 the basement was completed at a cost of $10,229.00 in addition to the many donated hours by the club members with building trade talents.
In the spring and summer of 1967 the upper log structure of the building was completed at a cost of $10,730.00 this required a loan of $13,000.
In 1968 major improvements were made in the basement with a new bar and wall paneling. Fund raisers to help defray the costs of these projects were the Dane County Tavern League picnic which realized revenue of $2,551 and the fall trap shoot with profits of $4,017.
By 1970 the tenth anniversary of the club, it was determined that the total cost of the building, improvements and the original land purchase was $34,764.52. The only outstanding debt at this time was $4,000.
In 1985 a Sliver anniversary party was held with life memberships issued to all charter members, past presidents and other active members. Since that time the club has become a very active trapshooting club with several hundred members.
Deerfield Rod and Gun Club
4372 Rod and Gun Road Deerfield, WI. 53531 Phone 608-764-5811
Just east of the Intersection of Highway 73 and County Highway BB