History Pages

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Volunteer & Projects Page

Explanation of Future Data Collection and Volunteers Needed

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Resources

1. America Letters From Wausaukee to Antwerp 1887 - 1937

Author: Dominique Van Rentergem

Copies of 3rd and 6th Edition available at Wausaukee Public Library

PDF OrderForm

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2. Cutover Country -Jolie's Story (Fiction) PDF Sample 

Author: Jolie Paylin

Copy available at Amberg Museum  & Wausaukee Public Library

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3. History of White Rapids

Author: Barbara Stutzman

Copy available at Amberg Museum

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4. 100th Anniversary St. Augustine Catholic Church

Author: Rev John McLaughlin

100th Anniversary St. Augustine Church - PDF Version for Download

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5. Peshtigo Times Wausaukee Centennial Issue Aug 5th 1987

Author: Printed by the Peshtigo Times

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6. Hank and Babe's Excellent Adventure

Author: Hank Laun  Copy available at Wausaukee Public Library

Email: ruthyo@aol.com

7.  Independent Newspaper - 38 Microfiche Reels 1895-1943 - Available at the  Wausaukee  Public Library

Author G.  Bogrand

8. The Marinette Story

Author: Fred C. Burke

9. 100th Anniversary Wausaukee Presbyterian Church

Authors: Pauline Boshan, Helen Rollo, Amelia Schroeder, Lola Thompson, Betty Wetzel.

Wausaukee Presbyterian Church PDF Version for Download

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Interviews:

Hank Laun 2009

Norm Smith 2009

Rudy Messar 2009

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Contributions to our history can be sent to:

brian@giphoto.com

Wausaukee Area History Page 5

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George E. Bogrand

Newspaper, Post Office, Bank

Wausaukee Public Library and Reading room

George Bogrand Family and Residence

 
 

George E Bogrand Sr founded the Wausaukee Independent Newspaper in 1895 at an annual subscription rate of $1.50 per year and printed from the small white building on the left. The first two copies were given away free to spark interest in the community. The paper was printed once a week and delivered on Saturday morning. 38 microfiche reels cover the entire run of the newspaper from 1895 thru 1943 and are available to view at the Wausaukee Public Library.  Peshtigo Times Article

 George E. Bogrand Sr. during his life was Wausaukee Postmaster (18 Years), President of Wausaukee State Bank (1913-1934), member of the Telephone Co. Board of Directors, and a director of the Wausaukee Board of Education. George died in Apr 1942. His son George Bogrand Jr. continued to publish the paper but did not have his fathers business experience. Several people tried to keep the paper going but the paper eventually closed.

Wausaukee had a free public library and reading room that was sponsored by H.P. Bird. It was housed in a building belonging to him and when he sold the building some years later to George E. Bogrand Sr., Bird donated the books and reading materials over to the high school. All reading materials donated were lost in the school fire some years later.

George E. Bogrand Sr. moved his printing operation from the small adjacent building to the upper floor of the new building and opened the Wausaukee Post Office on the bottom floor after being appointed Postmaster. The former printing building was then torn down and George E Bogrand Sr. built a home on the lot.

Banking History

Wausaukee State Bank - Currently Bank North 

1907 Bank North Teller Windows 

Wausaukee State Bank on Right

2009 Bank North

 

The Wausaukee State Bank (Currently Bank North) was organized in 1901 and began operations in 1903. The door of the vault had not arrived yet but this did not dampen the enthusiasm of the Wausaukee Community. The first days deposits were $1,183 and within three days increased to $12,000. In 1933, the Pembine-Wausaukee Bank evolved when Wausaukee State Bank consolidated with Pembine State Bank. In 1943 a branch was opened in Crivitz. The bank is currently known as Bank North and also has  branches in Amberg, Pembine and Goodman. The tellers in the bank photo are R.B. Ellis as cashier and Roy Riley as Assistant Cashier. The bank building moved from the two story brick building to its present site which was the former Knights of Pythias/Gamble Store building location.

 

 
October 7, 1922

Wausaukee Independent Newspaper

Burning their way through the door of the vault of the Wausaukee State Bank early Sunday morning, burglars carried off $142.71 in cash and the contents of 35 safe deposit boxes. The burglars used an oxy-acetylene torch, burning a panel out of the bottom of the vault door of sufficient size to admit a man. The robbery was discovered by cashier P.O. Winther who went to the bank early in the morning. He immediately telephoned County Sheriff Doberstein, who promised to come to Wausaukee in the afternoon, but failed to keep his appointment.

 

 

The tenant on the second floor of the bank building was Dr. Thomas DDS (Dentist). Doctor Thomas worked alone, no nurse, no receptionist. His office smelled like anesthetic.  There was no worse fate than to sit in that chair and watch the whirring belt driven drilling machine while Doc drilled out the cavity and filled it, usually without Novocain. Hank Laun

When Doc Thomas retired, Dr. Dowdell took his place.  In 1942, he had Dr. Rose, who also had an office on the second floor, give my sister Ruth Sodium Pentothal to put her to sleep so he could pull two teeth. Unable to wake her they sent her to the Marinette Hospital in an ambulance where she recovered. I still remember hearing and seeing the ambulance racing south on US 141 while our gang was out near Tracy's farm. We wondered who it was; I found out later when I got home that it was Ruth. Dr. Dowdell later sold his dentistry business to Dr. P.P. Knorr. Hank Laun

 

 

War - Bands - Baseball and Soda

Doughboys in WWI

1917 Wausaukee Band

Wausaukee Black Diamonds

1921 Wausaukee Baseball Team

Frank Sinkey Soda Wausaukee, WI

 

World War I doughboys from local area made the paper. They include Frank Shields, Anton Forst and John Edlebeck but are not specifically identified in the photo. Victor Everix returns to work in Wausaukee Bakery.

The boys in the band posed in 1917 for this photo taken in front of the Bert James barber shop. which was located next to the Knights of Pythias hall on the east side of Main St. Some of the participants can be identified from Left to Right Back Row:  #2 Lewis Polomis, # 4 Bud Londo,  #5 Pete Polomis, #6 Roy Riley, #7 Andrew Payant. Front Row from Left to Right: #2 band leader Matt Pelnar, #3 Bert James, #4 Austin Christ, #5 Frank Martin, #6 Vernon Hallenbeck, #7 Seth Ferdon, and extreme right is Loren Nowell.

The Wausaukee Black Diamonds used to thrill crowds from far and wide. In this pre 1915 photo Heiman Cody stands far left but none of the other players are identified. The grandstand used to be on High School Hill.

The 1921 Wausaukee baseball team. Baseball has been one of the more popular sports in the area and it continues to grow in popularity with the improvements made to our Ballas Park Ball field thru the local Baseball Association.

The bottle is clearly labeled Frank Sinkey, Wausaukee, WI but there is no official date as to when the soda was manufactured or distributed throughout our area. Several Sinkey Soda Bottles were found in the excavation during building of the Marquis Style shop in 1973.  If you start on Hwy 141 at the Bowl and go East on Monroe until you hit Cedar, the lot in front of you (Novak home) is where the Sinkey Soda Factory was located. Frank Sinkey was the owner and his son Reinhart also worked in the factory with his father. Bottles of red soda sold for 5 cents each. No time frame is available about when the factory was in operation or how many flavors may have been produced. "Norm said if as kids, you would help around cleaning up in the factory, he would give you a bottle of soda."

 

Prohibition

       April 15, 1905 Chairman Thompson outlawed slot machines in saloons and  all were removed. The anti-saloon forces won a victory by 4 votes to make Wausaukee dry. The vote was 122 for licenses and 126 against. On June 30, 1917 all taverns were closed.  

     

 
Wausaukee Independent Newspaper - June 14, 1924

 

     Sheriff Oscar Dahl with his deputies and Federal Prohibition Officer Thomas Martin swooped down upon several farms south of Wausaukee, near the very famous "Moonshine Hill" Friday and conducted one of the most successful raids recorded in these parts. At the Charles Engelmann farm they confiscated 60 gallons of moonshine whiskey. Engelmann was arrested and taken to Marinette where he admitted having manufactured the illicit liquor and he was bound over for trial in Circuit Court. This is the biggest capture of whiskey ever made in the county.

 

 
 
Wausaukee Independent Newspaper - July 23, 1927

 

     Charged respectively, with reckless driving and being drunk and disorderly, D.W. Babcock and W.J. Owens, both state prohibition officers, were arrested Sunday afternoon in Wausaukee by traffic officer Gabber.  When arrested the men were in a car which they were driving in a manner that interfered with traffic. The "wet" dry officers claimed they had visited several places in Wausaukee that day and purchased moonshine in a number of them.  It was evident by their actions that the prohibition agents had consumed considerable of the evidence they had gathered in Wausaukee, for Owens was barely able to walk when ordered to get out of the car.

 

 

Wildlife and access to it

Wausaukee Ranger Station

Wausaukee Ranger Station

Current Wausaukee Ranger Station

Gravel Roads

Hunting is Plentiful

 

     Wausaukee Ranger Station just north west of the Wausaukee River Hwy 141 Bridge  on County C as it appeared when the new bridge was built. Gravel and dirt logging roads were the typical roads into the Wausaukee wooded areas allowing access to hunting and logging. Hunting was always a means to subsist for families and evolved into  a very popular tourism related activity.  This area had a natural abundance of deer, bear, fish, and bird available from the vast tracts of wooded areas that are still dotted with lakes and rivers. The regulation of those resources were handled by DNR Offices that were spread approximately every 10 miles along the highway and in the Marinette area. Each had foresters, wardens and  office personnel to monitor/sell hunting/fishing licenses and registration duties in their respective areas. These services have now been consolidated and moved to the Peshtigo Office and the smaller community buildings/shops now only house forestry, warden, fire and other offices that do not have customer service areas.  The shops can be seen in Wausaukee, Niagara, and Pembine .

    Forest to Farm and back to Forest:  Cutover Country explains in story form the sale of harvested timber land  for farming, the character of the people that tried to farm the area and the hardships endured in making a living from such difficult stumpage land.

    Most of the soil that represented the harvested timber land was not suitable for farming and would not sustain a crop. The eventual  replanting led to the State and County parks we know as public lands and the park system which contributes to our tourism economy today.

     Dynamiting of the timber stumps allowed the clearing of the former forest lands to sell and promote farming in the area.

 
    

Bakery Owners in 1910

    
       After years of hardship in logging camps, Emile Everix and his wife, Mary Debot, were able to realize the American Dream. They owned not just one bakery in Wisconsin, but a chain of them.

 

     Bakery owner Emile Everix, now a prosperous man, with a party of family and friends, in his Studebaker coach back in 1925.

 

 

 

(Wausaukee Independent - July 10, 1920)

Felix Wittock Buys The Wausaukee Bakery

 

Emile Everix Will Give Up Possession of the Property Saturday.

Emile Everix, who some time ago bought a bakery at Chilton and moved his family to that place, has disposed of his Wausaukee bakery to Felix Wittock who will take possession of the property on Saturday.  Victor Everix expects to remain with Mr. Wittock until the new proprietor masters all the secrets of the art of fine baking.

 

 

Train Station & Traffic

 

Wausaukee Train Station view toward NW

Train Station Viewed toward South East

Train Arrival July 4, 1925

 

    The C.M. & S.P. Railroad hauled passenger and supply trains thru the depot many times a day during the logging era. It was the main mode of transport for product leaving or coming to the village.  Eight Passenger trains came to the village a day and Freight trains went thru on the average of once every 20 minutes. After the logging industry moved east the amount of rail use diminished. Passenger trains eventually stopped coming to the area and freight trains currently run approximately 1 or 2 times a day.

History of the lumber freight trains covering the territory from Marinette, Dickinson, and Florence Counties shows the interconnection of rail lines to move the lumber from the camps to the mills and then to the final market.

The Settlers Day Picnics

1915 Settlers Day Picnic

1915 Settlers Day Picnic

1915 Settlers Day Picnic

Settlers Day Picnic July 4th, 1925

1916 Dynamite Demonstration

     Independent Newspaper clipping with photos showing another settlers picnic at the Menominee River with local residents in 1919.

     Each and every person who has ever called Wausaukee "home" has made a unique and lasting contribution to the history of this place.  The Settlers Day Picnics were a celebration for the common man who built this area up with their sweat and hard work ethic.

     Dynamite was used extensively to remove stumps from the land. Sales men would set up demonstrations at the Picnics so that all could see the power of the Dynamite for removing large stumps. Once the stumps were dynamited the horse teams were attached by chain to pull out the remaining debris.

     The book Cutover Country explains in novel form the land clearing of the former forest areas to convert to agriculture use. The term Cutover Country referred to the wholesale logging off of the original forests and the land was then left full of tree stumps. The land was then sold cheaply to unsuspecting investors who thought the land would be good for farming.

  Marinette
County
Fair
   

 

     The Marinette County Fair was originally established and property leased from the Village of Wausaukee for 99 years on the site where the Immanuel Baptist Church is currently located within the Village. The Fair was also  allowed to use the Recreation Building interior space for several years to house displays and set up events outside the building.     

    The current Fairgrounds area was built east of the Recreation Building (Currently Evergreen Plaza & WPS buildings) and on Fairgrounds  road bordered by the Wausaukee River and Cedar Street. This became the permanent site for the fairgrounds.

     The fair is usually held at the end of August just before the opening of school. The fair features, live bands, 4-H horse competitions, livestock and domestic animal displays/awards, food vendors, truck pulls, tractor pulls, demolition derby's, carnival rides, booth displays, photo and food competitions, and paid booth displays from merchants.

     Marinette county board members attending the Potato Growers Institute sometime before 1915 in the Village of Wausaukee.

     The colored fair poster was mass produced by the Amusement company supplying the rides for a local fair. This poster represents the typical design we would have seen in the 50s thru the 60s for this type of advertising.  

A Break through in Service Stations

 

Standard Station as it appeared around the 1950's

BP Gas owned by LaFaive Oil 2009 Image

 
       With all companies thru history, the Standard station that started has evolved thru Corporate changes from Standard, to Amoco and currently the BP trademark.  It has remained a service station through out its history with only changes of ownership.  

 

 
Wausaukee Independent Newspaper: March 14, 1925  Wausaukee is to have a new business this year which should prove of vital interest to the automobile owning public. With the price of gasoline steadily advancing and a tax of two cents a gallon to be placed on it the first of April, it is very gratifying to learn that we are to have the benefit of a price reduction when A. R. Parsons and R.D. Lenininger establish a Standard Oil filling station here.
 

     Other stations include Roy Gustaveson Service (A&M Heating & Air Conditioning), Texaco Service (Eric's Service), and Sinclair (Ice Cream Station), Mobil (Mosher Service).

     The station on the corner of Van Buren and Hwy 141 is Parkins Mobil Service. They had the sign of the Flying White Horse and it was owned by Elmer Parkins. It was a thrill getting gas there and watch him turn the crank to fill the large glass tank above the pump with gasoline and then let it gravity drain into the car. My dad filled his 1930 Chevrolet for 10 cents a gallon. While I was a freshman in High School Hibbard Engler came from Crivitz and bought the station. He made some marvelous improvements, like installing an indoor toilet with running water and building a grease pit so he could grease cars. He also added a lunch room on the north side--we called it "Ma Engler's" and spent a lot of after school time there  eating hamburgers and french fries and drinking cokes and coffee (5 cents a cup). Behind the station, Englers built a house that was the talk of the town--it was built with cement blocks right after W.W.II, which for Wausaukee at least was new technology. Hank Laun 

 

 

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