Auburn Township Scrapbook


   Auburn Area Scrapbook




1893plat_jersey.jpg (19741 bytes)
1893 plat of Jersey From C. M. Foote and J. W. Henion, Plat Book of Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin, Minneapolis:C. M. Foote & Co., 1893 (Wisconsin State Historical Society library microfilm P72-1172)



bannon.gif (32134 bytes)
The farmstead of Owen Bannon,
ca. 1893; The first Catholic
Masses were said here, before
the parish was founded. (from C. M. Foote and J. W. Henion)


stjonschurch_ak.jpg (4898 bytes)
St John's church and cemetery, New Fane (courtesy of Alan Krueger). Click on image for article.

From History of Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin,
Western Historical Company, Chicago: 1880*

In the southeast corner of Fond du Lac County lies the town of Auburn. It is bounded on the north by the town of Osceola, east by Scott, in Sheboygan County, south by Kewaskum, in Washington County, and west by Ashford, in the county of Fond du Lac. It contains thirty-six sections of land, but these are not all full sections. The actual number of acres in the town is 22,901.99, being 138.01 acres less than the full 36 sections - 23,040 acres. The territory of Auburn includes that platted by the United States as Township 13 north, in Range 19 east. The township quarter of the year 1834, by Mullett & Brink. It was subdivided into sections and quarter-sections during the second quarter of 1835, by Deputy Surveyor Hiram Burnham. By him the lake on Sections 10 and 15 was called "Crooked Lake;" the one on Sections 11, 12, 13 and 14 was named "Off-Set Lake." But these names were not retained. (These lakes are now named Auburn and Mauthe Lakes.)

The face of Auburn is smooth in appearance, though not level in surface; it is gently undulating, with ascents and declivities of various heights and depths. The streams of water - of which the principal are the three branches of Milwaukee River - flow with a strong current. Lying as it does within the broad belt of heavy-timbered land skirting the northerly part of the western shore of Lake Michigan, the territory now included in the town of Auburn presented to the eye, in its natural state, neither prairie, openings, nor hay marsh - nothing but continuous woods. The forest trees proclaimed the excellence and fertility of the soil which sustained their growth; the principal of which were sugar-maple, basswood, elm, black ash, white ash, red oak, white oak, hickory and butternut. The large groves of sugar-maple offered excellent opportunities for manufacturing maple sugar.

The soil of this town is a deep, black, sandy loam, with a mixture of marl, and a subsoil of reddish clay. In early spring, when the county was first settled, the ground in the woods became covered with grass and herbage, giving good support to cattle before vegetation was developed in cultivated fields. Many of the farms of Auburn have living springs upon them, which send their running waters to swell the outlet of Long Lake and the three branches of the Milwaukee River. The soil is rich in those properties which make it warm, productive and durable. The different varieties of grain are cultivated with success, while the growth of grass is generally excellent. The Northwestern Union Railroad crosses the southwestern corner of Auburn in its northwesterly course toward Fond du Lac, entering it near the center of the south line of Section 32, and leaving it at the northwest corner of Section 19, crossing into the town of Ashford.

The first settlement in this town was made in 1846 by Ludin Crouch and John Howell, on the spot afterward occupied by CrouchvilIe, now New Cassel. Here Mr. Crouch built a log shanty and then commenced building a saw-mill. The same year, there was a small settlement made in the neighborhood by J. 0. Baldwin, J. L. Perry, C. Crownhart, Rev. H. A. Sears and others, but some of them settled across the line in what is now Ashford. In February, 1847, Roswell Hill purchased a lot on the west side of the Milwaukee River, near what was subsequently Crouchville, built a house, and, in July following, removed his fami1y into it. Alamon Wheeler, Seward Wilcox and Harvey Woodworth soon located in the same neighborhood. Several other settlements were made in different parts, and, that year, the town of Auburn was organized, its territory including, also the present town of Ashford. (The first settlement of Ashford and Auburn being so near to the line now dividing the two, it is no wonder there is a dispute as to who were first settlers in each.) At the first election, held at Mr. Crouchs mill, there were twenty votes polled. Ludin Crouch was elected Chairman, and Hiram Hatch, Town Clerk.

The first marriage was C. Hemenway to Harriet Hall in December, 1847.

The first school taught in Auburn was in the summer of 1848, in the house of Mr. Crouch, by Miss Maria Bristol. Mrs. Crouch taught the school the next year.

The first death was that of Mrs. J. 0. Baldwin in 1846 or 1847. Rev. Harvey A. Sears preached the funeral sermon.

The first stock of goods - general merchandise - was opened in the fall of 1849, probably, at Crouchville.

Auburn was named by R. F. Adams and brother, after Auburn, N. Y., their native place.

Michael McCulloch was the first Irish settler; Philip Oelig and Gerhardt Volkerts, the first German settlers in Auburn.

The most notable event in the history of this town was the tornado of July 4, 1873, which killed one person and laid waste forests, crops, buildings, fences and other property in large amounts.

The first election after Auburn and Ashford were separated, was in April, 1849, at which twenty-seven votes were cast. T. S. Wilcox was elected Chairman; M. Buckland, Clerk; A. W. Wheeler, Assessor; C. D. Gage, Collector, and M. Miller, Superintendent of Schools.

NEW PROSPECT. This is called "Jersey" because its first settlers came from New Jersey. The first Postmaster was B. Romaine, who held the office twenty years, being appointed probably in 1859. He was with Gen. Scott in the Mexican war. In 1877, a two-story building for a schoolhouse and church was built on Mr. Van Blarcoms farm. The church is non-sectarian.

EBLESVILLE. This village was founded by Andrew Eble, who came from Milwaukee, in 1855, purchased the water-power and built a saw-mill. He was accidentally shot on Christmas, 1859. The New Fane Post Office, established on the line between Sections 29 and 30 in 1851, by T. S. Wilcox, was moved to Eblesville in 1875. The village consists of a saw and feed mill, two stores, Lutheran Church, built in 1871, and the usual number of shops.

* Like many similar publications of the period, Western's 1880 history relies heavily on interviews with early residents conducted many years later. Narratives were subject to selective, sometimes creative recollection, and the resulting work should be appreciated for the historical publication that it is but viewed with a critical eye as a history. We caution viewers to verify the data contained in these early stories.

Appreciation to Ron Friedel for transcribing the text.

Last updated 2/1/2000 This site represents an ongoing effort to collect information related to the history of the town of Auburn. If you have information to share, please contact Bob Schuster by email at or at 6020 Kristi Circle, Monona, Wisconsin 53716 (608) 221-1421.