While no one is sure exactly who created the small subterranean chamber that lies within the Sunnyslope Shelter, one can see where it gets its nickname, “One Man’s Castle.” It looks like it could have been a fortress for exactly one person.
Alternately known as the “Schech Dugout,” or the “Stein Dugout,” after homesteaders who are known to have made use of the solitary cellar, the structure has been sitting alone in a field since the early days of the 20th century. The shelter consists of little more than an arch of sandstone blocks holding a wooden door, which leads to the stairs down into the single chamber. The underground room measures about 7x13 feet, with ceilings that stand roughly 6 feet high. And that’s it. Truly a tiny castle for just one person.
In seriousness, structures like the Sunnyslope Shelter were not uncommon once upon a time. When homesteaders would move to their new land they would build these simple shelters while their more permanent homes were constructed. Not many of these crude structures still exist, so the Sunnyslope Shelter is a historic gem.
Today the single occupancy fortress still stands on a private agricultural field that is still in use, although the lonely little underground chamber sits empty.