Wisconsin Genealogy Trails
Shawano County, Wisconsin
History


SHAWANO
[Source: "Milwaukee Free Press", 18 January 1913; submitted by Diana Heser Morse]

Shawano, the county seat of Shawano county, is a beautiful city of 2,600 inhabitants, nestled among the pine trees on the bank of the Wolf river.

Its first permanent settlement was in 1843, when the first saw mill was built, and it has always been the headquarters for the great lumbering operations of the Wolf river districts.

The geographical lay of the land, the level condition and the wonderful water power made it an ideal spot for the location of a large city, and it if was not for the fact that the logs were floated past Shawano down to Oshkosh, Shawano would today be one of the largest industrial centers of the state. Now, since lumbering has, in a great measure, given place to agriculture, the soil, under the highest degree of cultivation has developed the country around Shawano into one of the best farming and stock raising districts of the state, which is proven by the fact that the firm of Eberlein & Eberlein, breeders of Guernsey stock, has erected on its farm one mile east of Shawano, the finest stock barn in Wisconsin, so pronounced by ex-Gov. W. D. Hoard. They also have one of the finest ginseng farms in the country, shipping at one time last fall $5,000 worth of plants and seed.

There are still large tracts of hardwood timber, basswood, elm, maple, birch, oak and hemlock, with fast forests of pine still standing, tributary to Shawano, and the fine water power here, makes it a most desirable point for those looking for a manufacturing location. It is situated on the main line of the Chicago & North-Western, Green Bay & Manitowoc division, between Chicago and Ashland, giving ready access to all points north and west; also on the Oconto branch of the North-Western between Clintonville and Oconto. It is an hour's ride to Green Bay, and only a few hours from Milwaukee. Shawano is growing so rapidly that the North-Western railroad has not adequate means for handling its business here, which will mean the erection of a new freight depot and other improvements.

Shawano also is the beginning of the Wisconsin Northern railroad, which passes through the great Indian reservations, which has for its railroad center Neopit, where the largest government sawmill of the United States is located. Large trainloads of pine are shipped from there, through Shawano, to the ship industries of England.

It is only a question of a short time before the Wisconsin Northern railroad will extend its line north to Crandon and south to Menasha and Neenah, which will open up sections fo the country never before touched by railroads, and make Shawano the center of this great section in manufacturing, agriculture and commercial business.

Shawano owns its own electric plant, water and sewerage systems. Its main street is paved and all roads leading to Shawano are being graveled and put in excellent condition.

Shawano has a public library. Three miles south of Shawano is a county asylum in the course of erection, which will cost the county $200,000. The building is being constructed on the latest improved plans.

Shawano has for its chief industry the Wolf River Paper & Fiber Co., W. C. Zachow, manager, which owns the pulp, sulphite and paper mills, which employ about 160 men. The company has installed a new paper machine called "the Dutchman", which manufactures what is known as the specialties in paper, that is, tissue paper and paper that is glazed on one side and rough on the other, and many other of the thin kinds of paper. There are only seven of these machines in the United States.

Other industries are: A large brewery, sawmill, veneer and box factory, pickle factory, Regling Bros. cement works, flour and grist mills, creamery, large laundry, large potato warehouses, grain elevators and a large and up-to-date brick works owned by Thomas Larson, who has invented one of the most improved brick making machines of the time.

Shawano has the finest stores, especially its drug stores and meat markets, of any city in northern Wisconsin. It also has three substantial banks, the First National Citizens' State bank and the German American National, which has a most beautiful building.

There are six churches, the St. Jacobi Lutheran, having a membership of over 1,100 and which is to erect, in the spring, a fine hospital to cost $50,000; the Sacred Heart Catholic church has the next largest congregation.

Shawano also has its share of organizations, fraternal and charitable, an advancement association, woman's clubs, and goodfellowship club. The largest incorporated organization is the Woodlawn Shawano Cemetery association, Mrs. W. C. Zachow, president; Mrs. E. V Werner, secretary. The association has made it one of the beauty spots of Shawano.

Citizens of Shawano are all public spirited, and quick to respond any anything which is for the good of their city.

C. M. Upham, D. W. Wescott, R. W. Jackson, Marion Wescott, C. A. Raisler, Henry Klosterman, Mr. and Mrs. H. W. Murdock, Mrs. Henry Naber and Mrs. David Pulcifer are some of those still living who were among the early settlers, and who have done much for the advancement of Shawano.

M. J. Wallrich, president of the Wisconsin Advancement association has done much in the way of city improvements. E. V. Werner, W. C Zachow, F. W. Humphrey, A. Kuckuk, P. F. Dolan, L. D. Robers and B. Royer, mayor of Shawano, are some of the many public spirited men.

Fred Upham of Chicago, although not born in this city, came to Shawano when a mere lad, and has reached to heights of prominence, both in a financial and political way.

It is also said of Shawano that it has the most beautiful residences of any city of its size in Wisconsin, among which are the residences of August Anderson, John Black, Joe Black, Geo. a. Schutz, Geo. Klosterman, Mrs. F. J. Martin, E. V. Werner, C. J. Stier, W. C. Zachow, John Schweers, J. A. Lieg and many others.

Shawano has four beautiful school buildings, the high school, Lincoln graded school, St. Jacobi Lutheran school and the Sacred Heart Catholic school.

It is also the logical situation for the next normal school to be established by the state, as it is almost int he exact center of the locality which must derive benefit from such a school.

The last of its many attractions to be mentioned is its beautiful lake. Shawano lake, seven miles in length and three miles in width, with one of the finest beaches to be found anywhere. Many Milwaukeeans are interested and own cottages at North Beach.

Some of the best trout streams in the state are within a short distance of the city. In the hunting season ducks and other water fowls are to be found in the lakes and not very far north deer may be found plentiful in open season.


BRIEF SKETCHES OF SHAWANO HISTORY
[The Shawano Advocate (Shawano, Wis.) 26 Jan. 1906; submitted by Diana Heser Morse]

A Few Dates Which Are Well To Remember - Other News Notes

In the ordinance book now being published in book form by the city, a few dates and facts concerning the early history of Shawano are printed. We believe these will be of interest to our readers and publish same below:

Charles D. Wescott, first settler, 1843.

Shawano County incorporated February 16, 1853. Chap. 9, laws 1853.

First election held at house occupied by Chas D. Wescott.

First town meeting held April, 1853. Votes cast 47.

First supervisors of town of Shawano: Chas. D. Wescott, Elias Murray, Elisha Alexander.

First meeting of County Board of Supervisors. Nov. 13, 1855.

Abial Richmond platted E1/2 NE1/4 Sec. 36, T.27 R.15, July 8, 1856, as the town of Richmond.

First newspaper, "The Venture" owned by W. C. Thompkins, in 1858.

Village of Shawano incorporated March 11, 1871. Chap. 244, P. & L. laws of Wis., 1871.

First Pres. of Village, H. E. Howe, elected Apr. 3, 1871.

Trustees: H. H Martin, J. A. Winans, Jos. Maurer and Hiram Wescott.

Treasurer, P. W. Ackerman

Assessor, M. H. McCord.

Clerk, L. B. LaCount.

Police Justice, Henry Klosterman.

J. M. Robinson was appointed marshal.

City of Shawano incorporated 1874. Chap. 278, laws of 1874.

First charter election held April 7, 1854.

First mayor, D. H. Pulcifer.

Clerk, Spencer Wiley.

Police Justice, Henry Howe.

Treasurer, J. M. Robinson.

Albermen: First ward, Henry Klosterman, R. W. Lambert, C. A. Raisler. Second ward, G. W. Gibbs, J. D. Magee, C. L. Wiley.

Supervisor: First ward, H. Naber; Second ward, M. H. McCord.

Assessor: First ward, A. M. Andrews; second ward, J. A. Winans.

Justice of the Peace: First ward, H. E. Howe Sr.; second ward, H. M. Loomer.

Constable: First ward, Hiram Brace; second ward, Fred Hawkey.

First president of the council, G. W. Gibbs.

Electric light and waterworks plant built in 1900.

Main sewer and extension of water mains, 1904.

Extension to sewers, 1905.

Nmber of arc street lights, 30.

Number of Hydrants, 29.

Number of feet of water mains, 18,890.

Number of feet of sewers, 17,451.

Population of city, 1905: 2469.
 


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