Press Release
Miller House Returning to its Roots as Refuge Housing
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The Miller House will be fully returned to National Elk Refuge (Refuge) housing this summer and the downstairs portion will no longer be an interpretive center open to the public. The structure structure
Something temporarily or permanently constructed, built, or placed; and constructed of natural or manufactured parts including, but not limited to, a building, shed, cabin, porch, bridge, walkway, stair steps, sign, landing, platform, dock, rack, fence, telecommunication device, antennae, fish cleaning table, satellite dish/mount, or well head.

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historically served as housing for the Refuge from 1914 to 1942 and again from the 1970s to 2005. In the summer of 2005, the downstairs portion of the Miller House was opened to the public while the kitchen and upstairs apartment continued to serve as limited Refuge housing through present day.

Availability of employee housing has been an ongoing struggle for the Refuge, as it has been for the broader community. The Miller House will serve as critical housing for seasonal Refuge staff and volunteers.

The Miller House was closed for two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. When it reopened last summer, visitation was low and staffing the site remained a persistent challenge. The Miller House has had historically low visitation, with average daily visitation of about 6 people compared to the summer average of 650 per day in the National Elk Refuge and Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center.

The Refuge is currently revisioning its visitor experiences. The Refuge considered reimagining the visitor experience at the Miller House, but it was ultimately decided that the best use of the building is employee and volunteer housing. The Refuge will be constructing a welcoming new Nature Center at the current location of the National Elk Refuge and Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center in 2025. This new facility will better meet visitor needs and align with the mission of the Refuge.

Construction of the current Miller House began in 1895 and was completed in 1898. The house was massive for its time and is sometimes referred to as Jackson’s first “trophy home.” The large home served as an important meeting place for the community. The first elections in Jackson Hole were held in the house in 1898, as well as numerous civic meetings and social gatherings. It was even temporarily used as a U.S. Post Office. When Robert and Grace Miller sold their ranch in 1914, the Miller House became the National Elk Refuge headquarters.