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About Fitchburg

City Hall

As a former township, Fitchburg covers approximately 35 square miles. John Stoner began farming in the area of Fitchburg in 1837, near the southern portion of Seminole Highway. Since Stoner worked the farm during the week and returned to Madison where he lived weekends with his family, the title of first permanent settlers goes to the Vroman brothers-William, George and Joseph. They were Dutch immigrants who came to the area to work on the State Capital, but they began farming and built a residence in Fitchburg in 1839.


At one time the area of Fitchburg was part of a township called Rome, which also included part of the present towns of Oregon and Dunn. Fitchburg separated and became known as the Town of Greenfield in 1847. Joseph Vroman was the first Town Chairman serving from 1847 to 1849. The new name was chosen to describe the lush rolling fields around the town. Greenfield's name was changed to Fitchburg in 1853 due to confusion with Greenfield in Milwaukee County.


The center of Fitchburg government at that time was Oak Hall, a settlement area at the intersection of County M and Fish Hatchery Road. It was the site of the original Quivey's Grove, an inn that served as a stagecoach stop, a hotel, and a government meeting place. Also there was a post office at the site which served five surrounding townships.


City Logo

In addition to Oak Hall, several other areas of settlement grew in Fitchburg, largely influenced by early stagecoach routes and railroad stops. A settlement area at Highway MM and Cty. B was known as Lake View. Dogtown was located at Fish Hatchery and Lacy Road, Syene at Syene Road and Lacy Road, Swan Creek at Lacy and "MM", Stoner's Prairie around Stoner's farm site, and Fitchburg Village along Wendt Road. Fitchburg Village once might have been considered a "downtown" as it boasted a railroad station, feed mill, lumber yard, creamery, general store and post office.


Irish heritage figures prominently in Fitchburg's history and settlement as well. Many descendants of those first families can still be found in Fitchburg...the Kinneys, Gormans, Lacys, O'Briens, Foxs, Purcells and Barrys.


In addition to remnants of history found in family names and along Fitchburg roads, the City has five sites on the National Register of Historic Places. They include Fox Hall, a Greek revival style stone house built by the Fox family in 1856 located along County Highway "M". Other sites are the Mann House (Quivey's Grove restaurant), built in 1855, the Italianate McCoy House on Syene Road built between 1857 and 1861 by tobacco farmer Benjamin Brown, plus 13 original buildings of the Wisconsin Industrial School for Girls built in 1932, currently known as Oakhill Correctional Institute. Spooner's 1852 Swan Creek Farm is the most recent addition to the National Register; it is located along Lacy Road, close to County Highway "MM".


Several other buildings and sites in Fitchburg, not on the National Register, but of historic interest include the Oscar Mayer Observatory now located on the hilltop property of Fitchburg Research Park Associates. This little observatory was originally located next to the Washburn Observatory on the UW-campus. Built in 1878, it was used as a student observatory, and was moved to Fitchburg in 1960.

 

Many of Fitchburg's one room schoolhouses are still standing, and many can be located by the historical markers along the roadsides in the vicinity of Syene and Lacy, Grandview Road, Fish Hatchery and Whalen, County M and Fitchburg Road.


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Fitchburg officially became a city on April 26, 1983. Driven by Madison's continued encroachment into its boundaries and annexations of Fitchburg lands, the township government pursued a method of petitions signed by a percentage of Fitchburg's residents in order to declare itself a city. The fight to become a City was finally determined by a Wisconsin Supreme Court decision which allowed incorporation to proceed.

More information on Fitchburg history can be found in Fitchburg: A History, a bicentennial book written by Connie Darling and Jean O'Brien, and Irish Settlers of Fitchburg Wisconsin by Thomas Kinney.

 

Other Information

City Demographics

 

Neighborhood Associations

Briarwood

Byrnewood NA

  • Greg Shue, 442-8078

Dunn's Marsh NA Council

  • Also serves portions of the city of Madison
  • Dan O'Brien, 276 5519

Belmar

  • Dave Martin, 271 9129

East Fitchburg NA

  • Samuel Cooke, 273 2694

Country Heights

Country Vineyard

Forest Glen Condominiums

Greenfield

  • Terry Carpenter, 277 1963

Harlan Hills

  • Darren Stucker, 230 8300

Highlands of Seminole

  • Margaret Barker, 274-5174

Highlands Women's Group

  • Susan Gibson, 274 7064

Hillside Heights

  • Rena Gelman, 270-0660

Jamestown NA

  • Barb Peterson, 278-7564

Lacy Heights NA

  • lacyheights.org

Leopold Neighborhood Association

  • Ron Wendt, LNAssn. Communication Coordinator

Nobel Ridge Condominiums

Oak Meadow

Pine Ridge Homeowners Association

  • Rich Manteufel

Quarry Hill NA

  • Robert Zorko, 441 9822

Ridgewood Country Club Apartments

Seminole Forest

  • Joe Mattioli, 270 1060

Seminole Glen Condominium

  • Michael E Stevens, 276 9488

Seminole Glen Garden

  • Kristin Martin

Seminole Hills

  • Jack Dickinson, 274 5785

Seminole Ridge

  • Tamre Rotar, 278 8262

Seminole Village Condominium Homeowners Association, Inc.

  • Sally Anderson, 277 1125

Seminole Women's Club

  • Tracy Bachhuber

Southdale

  • Andy Jackson, 270 1690
  • Sarah Weiss, 274 6282

Sun Valley Apartments

Swan Creek Homeowners Association

  • Brian Moore

Teaberry Lane Home Owners Association, Inc.

  • Jeff Schoenfeldt, 825 8130

Tower Hill

Valley View Apartments

Waterford Glen

Western Hills

  • Lee Bartlett, 271 1230

Wildwood

Wildwood South

  • Mollie Driver, 276 0165
  • Jill Monson, 276 7429

Woodlands of Seminole Condominium

  • Donald Schenker, 276 5798

Website designed and created by Alex Melo and Brian VanDeWiel, 2007