In 1884, J.J. Doyle, the son of a wealthy homestead owner, arrived in what used to be the village of Wishek and settled in the area. He had successfully made a local political career for himself and was voted a member of the first village board in 1898. His reputation grew with his career and Doyle was elected as one of North Dakota’s Congressmen from 1909 to 1915. And it was Doyle who donated the 21 acres of land that formed the park that bears his name.
The park officially opened in 1925, but real development only began in the 1930s, with the construction of a pier and the planting of trees. Further progress occurred in the 1960s, when the Wishek Wildlife Club won state grants from the Bureau of Outdoor Recreation to improve the park and make it suitable for picnicking, camping, and water sports.