Built in 1871 by Alexander Wiley, Sr. and Nels Elikson, the rooming house was home to hundreds of immigrants, loggers, mill workers, farmhands, and log drivers (known as river pigs). In 1887 Wiley Sr. became the sole owner and operated it until 1895 when it was sold to Erick and Johanna Myrman. The Myrmans operated the Norway House until 1915, after which it was rented to various other operators until 1939 when the building was razed.
In its heyday, room and board were $4.00 per week. Horses were fed and bedded down in a large connected barn for 25 cents per day. Alexander Wiley, Jr. was born here in 1884 to Norwegian immigrants Alex and Sophia. He went from the lumberyards of the Northwoods to the Capitol grounds of Washington D.C.
Not satisfied with his first job as a lumberman, paying 15 cents per hour, Alexander attended Augsburg College in Minneapolis and then received his law degree from the University of Wisconsin in Madison. He returned to his hometown and practiced law for 30 years. He was elected to three consecutive terms as Chippewa County District Attorney.
Elected to represent Wisconsin in 1939 as a United States Senator, Alexander was a diligent worker for U.S. foreign affairs, military and industrial research, and preservation of natural resources and veteran rights. He served a distinguishing 24 years in Washington D. C., retiring in 1963.