Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin
||CHRONOLOGY, BIOGRAPHIES, AND GAZETTEERS:
Town of Alto Chronology
Biographies in Print
Village of Alto Gazetteers
PATENTS & MAPS:
Alto is the southwestern township in Fond du Lac County. It is bounded on the north by Metomen, east by Waupun, south by Trenton, in Dodge County, and west by Mackford, in Green Lake County. It is Township 14 North, in Range 14 East. It contains 23, 153.31 acres which is 93.31 acres more than thirty-six full sections. It was subdivided by John Brink in November 1834.
Fully one-fourth of its area is marsh, most of which yields valuable hay product. Nearly one-half was openings and timber land, which is highly prized by wheat-raisers. The remainder is prairie, rolling, warm and rich. The South Fork of the Rock River passes through the entire width of the town in its southern part, having two principal branches coming in from the north. These with brooks and springs, give abundant supply of water. Notwithstanding the United States Surveyor marked the soil of the town "second rate," it is, in fact, rich and highly productive. Wheat and wood are the chief exports, Waupun and Brandon afford convenient markets.
Francis D. Bowman, formerly of Rochester, N. Y., was the first settler in Alto, having located on Section 36 late in 1841. The first advent of a Hollander (said to have been a Mr. Meenk) into Alto was in 1845, and now three-fourths of the polulation are of that nationality. Politically, Alto is the banner Republican town of the county.
Alto was organized on the 6th of April, 1847, at a meeting held in the schoolhouse near Miller's mill, in the southeast part of the town. At this first town meeting the proposition to confer "equal suffrage to colored people" was voted down by five majority.
History of Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin,
The first church organized in the town of Alto was the First Reformed, or Ebenezer church. In 1856 land was bought in section 23 for a church ediface, on which the building was erected. It was organized as a Reformed church, with forty-seven members. The first trustees were: N. Mensink, F. Beeuwkos, M. Duven, G. Duitman, G. Stilsel, C. Landaal, L. Sligster and J. W. Kastein. This church, as will be noticed from the names of the members, was composed mostly of Hollanders. They first began settlements in the town in the later part of 1845. These people first held religious services in private houses but in 1848 erected a log church, 16x26 feet, which also served as a schoolhouse. A second Reformed church was subsequently built, mainly at the expense of Henry Bruins; also a Methodist Episcopal and Congregational church were built.
Alto village, lying in section 23, and about six miles north of Waupun, no longer has a postoffice. There is a general store.
Maurice McKenna, Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin,
|Last updated 2/13/2000
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