Mid-Ohio Valley teen finds good, bad in brush with internet fame

Photo by Jeff Baughan Ellie Yeater stands within the confines of her “glamper.” The 1974 Wilderness camper is 12-foot long by 8-eight foot wide by 6-foot high.

WILLIAMSTOWN — The summer of 2016 Ellie Yeater wanted a place she could call her own. Well, as much of her own as a 14-year-old would be allowed.

She bought a 1974 Wilderness camper and renovated it into a “glamper.” The family project became an internet sensation.

“Lori Haught of Woodcraft did the original story on her blog and it just gradually built from there,” said Lori Yeater, Ellie’s mother. “It was submitted to HomeTalk and now it has been viewed 1.45 million times on that website alone.”

That’s a bit of the good news. They’ve also had to deal with a bit of what everyone already knew, not everyone involved with the internet is respectful of privacy or has manners.

Lori said “some people just can’t say anything but hurtful things. I think it’s more directed towards me as a mother more than towards Ellie but come on… really? They don’t know her. Or myself. These hurtful words and nasty comments are what they think is happening? People have accused her of using the glamper for parties, booze, pills and worse. It’s sad and infuriating at the same time.”

Photo by Jeff Baughan Ellie Yeater stands by an outside corner of her “glamper,” which is parked near the family home. Yeater’s camper refurbishment has brought her national attention and her story has been rewritten in many languages.

The glamper camper is approximately 12-foot long by 8-eight foot wide by 6-foot high according to Lori

Still, the good moments have far outweighed the bad in Glamper Land.

“One Sunday dad walked in and asked if I had looked on the lead stories on AOL,” said Ellie, “and there was the glamper in the lead stories with Mother Teresa and then President Obama.”

“It’s been translated in other languages. How many I don’t know. A dozen pages into Google and you’re still going to find the story,” said Lori. “It’s really been amazing.”

“Rachel Ray’s show called,” she continued, “A production company which works with HGTV, DIY, and the Food Network found me on Twitter. Reba McEntire retweeted it.”

The trailer is located across a double driveway from the Yeater home, which is situated on 60 acres of forest and barnyard.

“We put it within the view of the front window. Ellie wanted something with wifi and electricity,” said Lori. “She wanted something for herself. Her older brother Isaiah has a cabin on the property. It’s heated with a pot belly stove and has no electric. It’s very rustic.”

While the glamper wasn’t going to be as rustic as her brother’s, it was going to be Ellie’s. Then Haught’s blog submission to HomeTalk hit the creative edge and ideas of the do-it-yourself websites.

“They found her and now the internet is using the story and it’s been rewritten many times,” Lori said. “Someone sees it and likes it, rewrites it and uses the pictures. No permission, no notification, no nothing. They’ve pulled pictures from everywhere.

“One even published the story and pulled her picture and biography we used to promote the Guild Builders’ ‘Alice in Wonderland Jr.’ production,” Lori said. “They put it all out there. Her full name, her age, where she is from, where she goes to school… Everything about her to where if anyone wanted to find her, they could. I posted on their comments to take it (the bio) and surprisingly they did.”

“I don’t like to Google my name and see what is associated with it,” Ellie said. “I don’t look at the comments on the websites. It can be a bit scary at times as to what people post. I let mom look.”

Lori said she does read the comments and will shield Ellie from the comments.

“I’m very protective of her,” she said. “I’m very leary of adults we don’t know and I’m trying to protect her and sometimes it still creeps into her life because it’s all out there now.”

“Mom controls the social media,” Ellie said. “I won’t accept anyone I don’t know and if I have questions about who someone is, I take it to her.

A second trailer has been moved into the Yeater property, very similar to the glamper. Ellie said the second camper is a summer project which she will refurbish and sell.