|History of the Rountree Branch|
Location of Rountree
Rountree Branch-1980 Rountree Branch-2001
As shown above, the Rountree Branch has undergone great cleanup efforts in the last 20 years. Starting in the 1980s area high school students began clean up efforts on the Rountree Branch. In 1981 with the help of Jim Sciacca, a Platteville High School Biology teacher, trout were planted in the Rountree Branch. Many did not expect these fish to survive, but they did and still reproduce to this day.
Roaster piles containing mining wastes were draining into the Rountree Branch for years until a UWP Senior Design class designed a cap for the roaster piles in 199?. This cap prevented further leaching of mining wastes into the Rountree Branch.
In the 1980s the floor drain in Swiss Valley cheese plant emptied directly into the Rountree Branch causing much contamination. The stream is now protected from dairy contaminants, these wastes currently go to the Platteville Waste Water Treatment Plant instead of being discharged into the Rountree Branch.
In 1998 there was an oil spill from Consumers Oil in the upper section of the Rountree Branch. This spill killed much of the life in and around the Rountree Branch and clean up efforts were once again needed.
As you can see, many productive projects have made the Rountree Branch a wonderful environmental classroom. The Rountree Branch will continue to provide learning opportunities for many years into the future.