News & Events

Antigo Daily Journal reports on remodeling plans

Current Newsletter - Winter_2019.pdf

Newsletter Highlights

Remodeling Plans Continue
Preserving Francis Deleglise's Cabin
Sources for Tips on Restoring Historic Buildings - Sandborn Maps
How to Preserve Your Historic Building

Annual Board Meeting

Our 2018 annual meeting will take place on Sunday November 4 from 1pm to 4pm at the TimberHaven in Polar. There will be a dinner followed by a brief business meeting and a presentation entitled “A Stroll through Old Downtown Antigo”. Details of the meeting are on a separate page in this newsletter.

Downtown flourished with business and social life when Antigo was a major railroad hub, from the beginning of the 20th century to the 1950s and on into the 1960s and 1970s. But, like many smaller cities, downtowns have been affected by movement of retail sales to big box stores at the outskirts and to online retail outlets. With efforts underway to revitalize downtown, we should take pride in and perhaps learn from what was a thriving area with the variety of stores and opportunities for gathering and socializing.

The presentation will be given by board members Dean Blazek and Joe Hermolin. A few years ago Blazek and Hermolin assisted Antigo Middle School students to prepare a booklet entitled “Take a Walk Back in Time in Downtown Antigo”. The project was directed by teachers MS Umland and MS Darr and used information and photographs from the museum archives and Blazek’s recollections

Elections and Appointment of Officers

Each year three members of the 9 member board have their terms expire. This year the terms of Nancy Bugni, Joe Hermolin, and Diane Zuelzke were up. All agreed to serve another term and were placed in nomination. In addition there was a vacancy on the board due to the resignation of Gary Whitman. His knowledge, sensitivity to history, and work efforts were noted at themeeting and are sorely missed. The current board recommended that Chris Haedtke be elected to fill the remainder of that term. There were no other nominations and the slate of Nancy Bugni, Chris Haedtke, Joe Hermolin, and Diane Zuelzke were elected unanimously.

At a subsequent board meeting officers were appointed: Joe Hermolin President, Lisa Haefs Vice-president, Mary Kay Wolf Secretary and Chris Haedtke Treasurer.

What Makes Wisconsin Wisconsin?

Planning for a new state-of-the art historical museum in Madison continues and officials are looking for you (and others interested in history) to help in the planning. The museum will be one of the country’s finest and is being developed by nationally recognized planners.

A major portion of the new museum, both in terms of financial support and space (approximately 5,000 square feet) will be devoted to local history. Our Antigo museum is one of over 400 local museums affiliated with the Wisconsin Historical Society and one of three in Langlade County (in addition to White Lake and Elcho). Planners of the new Madison facility want to hear from local communities on what they feel “Makes Wisconsin Wisconsin?” They will use information gathered to prepare exhibits for display in Madison which would then be installed in the local contributing museums.

To better plan, the Wisconsin Historical Society is embarking on a listening tour throughout the state, visiting 19 sites of local historical societies and 12 American Indian Nations. Some meetings have already taken place and our area’s turn will occur in the spring of 2019, likely in Wausau. We are requesting our community to do their homework and think about “What makes Wisconsin Wisconsin?”, particularly what does this area contribute to defining our state. Is it our logging history, the impact of Kentucks, Kraft Cheese and other aspects of the dairy industry, Antigo Silt Loam and potatoes, our recreational facilities, or something else? We will update the schedule as it becomes known but until then let us know what you think through a phone call, email, letter, or drop in during museum hours. Better yet, come to the meeting to contribute there and see what others have to say.

Building Progress

Construction of the original building

After some false starts, and input from museum visitors, members, and the general public we are well on the way to advance with a detailed remodeling plan for the building. What started as a careful Historic Structures Report in 2003, followed by several ad hoc vital repairs and a preliminary remodeling plan which met with some negative feedback, we have developed a workable plan with an excellent advisory team. What began with interior remodeling evolved, after community input, into a priority for improving accessibility issues first. Interior remodeling is still on the list but at a lower priority.

Working now with Wausau based architect Rod Cox, who has designed Hoffman Hall at St. John Catholic Church in Antigo, and local builders we are looking to erect an addition to the north façade of the building that will house an elevator and restrooms with access to all three floors. The style will be consistent with the architecture of the Carnegie Library which houses the museum and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The plan removes an objection to the earlier plan to build a ramp entrance into the main entry. This would have adversely affected the appearance of the east facing main façade and had a number of practical problems.

Additional improvements, as funds allow, will include energy efficient lighting appropriate for museum displays, and repairing and improving the ceiling and heating/air conditioning duct work. Another goal, if funding allows, is to restore the space on the second floor for use as an auditorium. With the building becoming accessible to all we can again host events and programs in the space as it was originally intended.

Tax-deductible donations may be sent to:

Let’s Make History
c/o Langlade County Historical Society
P.O. Box 215
Antigo, 54409
Handouts on the project are available at the museum’s front desk and on our web site. A brochure is in development. To learn more or arrange a presentation on the project, contact Joe Hermolin at the museum, 715 627-4464, or Lisa Haefs at 715 499-2974 or Nancy Bugni, at 715 610-4464.

Langlade archives online

Langlade County Historical Society information online at website.

CCC Camp 657 of Elcho Added to Archives

Elcho CCC 657The CCC was one of the most successful of the New Deal projects implemented by FDR. It provided work and training for many young men and financial support for their families.

Camp 657 was established, in June, 1933 at Summit Lake in Langlade County. More permanent barracks were erected at nearby Otter Lake, in Elcho. In November 1933 the recruits marched in from their tents at Summit Lake to their new barracks in Elcho.

Camp 657 primarily did reforestation in a region that had been clear cut by the logging industry. Enrollees planted almost 1,400 acres and also build fire roads, lookout towers, fire breaks, did stream and pond development with fish stocking, improved conditions for wild game and established 3 acres of public campgrounds. More than 75 years after the camp ceased its existence the benefits of their efforts are still enjoyed in Langlade County.

Photos, camp newsletters, and memorabilia of Camp 657 Elcho may now be viewed at (in the search window, type “ccc camp 657 elcho”).

Medicine Man


A. J. Kingsbury Picture Postcards of Northern Wisconsin

Images of Ojibwe and Menominee Indians in northeast Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in the early 20th century, photographed by Arthur J. Kingsbury of Antigo.
Click to View Collection

Deleglise LetterDeleglise Documents

Letters written to family members by Francis Deleglise, founder of the city of Antigo, during his service in the Civil War.
Click to View Collection


Steam EngineLanglade County Railroad Photographs

The railroad photographs in the collection of the Langlade County Historical Society depict depots, rail yards, rail crews, locomotives, and train wrecks in the Antigo area from the late 19th century to the 1990s. View collection.
Click to View Collection

Logging Wagon Langlade County Logging Photographs

The logging photographs in the collection of the Langlade County Historical Society document work crews, logging camps, sawmills and other aspects of Wisconsin’s logging industry from the 19th century to the 1990s.
Click to View Collection


Anitgo Soldiers in World War I

In World War I Langlade County men formed the 107th Trench Mortar Battery Company. They saw action in France and participated in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. William Wessa documented the 107 TMB with photos and a written history.
Click to View Collection

Reuben Sweet Diary

Rueben Sweet Diary

Rueben Sweet left Manitowoc in 1863 to fight in the Civil War. He participaed in Sherman's March to the Sea.
Click to View Collection




by Richard Prestor and Joseph Hermolin

$21.99 - The newest book in the Arcadia Publishing's Images of America Series

Recent Donations:

Tom Bauknecht: Photo of Camp Douglas, 1917
Paul Becket: History of Moose Lake (which he authored)
Rose Fleischman: Photo album of G. Wagner, WWII veteran
Bill Rebernick: Woven bag made by Rose Kierzek Rebernick in AHS class in 1925
Claire Schneider: War medals

Monetary Donations:

Patricia Dellios for Dean Blazek
James & Kathleen Wing
Langlade County Genealogical Society

Member Renewals:

Fran Brown, DeDe Cromer, Roger & Kay Doran, Robert Duerwachter, Judy Grimm, Chris Haedike, Sheila Hall, Joe Hermolin, Sally Jansen, William Johnson, Susan Johnson, Mary Josvai, Ed & Geneva Kennedy, William & Charlotte Kraft, Ron & Judy Korn, Jacob Meister, Don & Mary Mollet, Nancy Pelzer, Dave & Judy Peterson, Reid family, Jacqulyn Reynolds, Sandy Robrecht, Nick & Jeanette Salm, Sam & Carol Steffan, Dick Strasser, Bill & Helen Williams, Diane Zuelzke

Let’s Make History Building Donors:

Anonymous, Barbara Arnold, Dennis & Jean Bardelmeier, Patricia Barta, Re. Charles Hoffman, Patricia & Richard Kennedy, David & Judy Peterson, James Posselt, Joan Shimeck, Mary Schroeder

We took our show on the road:

Parts of the museum went on field trips to the community. we went to Pleasant View Elementary on three occasions to describe Francis Deleglise and the founding of Antigo, Antigo’s general history, and logging history in Langlade County. History is not just for the classroom and students.

This year, for the first time, we were invited to Breakfast on the Farm as part of June Dairy Month. A constant stream of breakfast attendees visited our display of old dairy farming related photographs and equipment. Some old-timers reminisced about old time practices while others, much younger, needed explanations of what they were looking at. Breakfast on the Farm is definitely an event the museum hopes to participate in again.

Special Thanks:

To all who donated items for our rummage sale and helped on the day of the sale and all who baked pies and helped at our table at music in the park. Thanks to all who helped at our annual railroad picnic: especially celebrity chefs Gary Kieper and Steve Bradley, The Springbrookers band, art donors Karen Aulik-Now and Andy Kazukewicz for our raffle.


Wisconsin Council for Local History

Mary Kay Wolf - CuratorThe Wisconsin Council for Local History is a state wide organization of over 370 local history groups. The Langlade County Historical Society is part of the Northwoods Region. The Council helps local groups in several ways:

  1. Each year mini-grants are awarded to a number of groups. This year the Langlade County Historical Society received a grant for the purchase of archival boxes and pages for our photo collection. Curator Mary Kay Wolf is busy organizing and indexing our archives and in the near future they should be much more accessible to the public.

  2. The Council, together with the Wisconsin Historical Society, organizes a number of workshops and webinars on a wide range of topics. A recent conference was held in Madison and board president Joe Hermolin attended workshops in processing archival collections, web design, and digitization. Workshops are being planned for spring and the next annual conference is scheduled for Wisconsin Rapids from October 11-12, 2013. Details on future workshops, webinars, and conferences, as well as bibliography and notes from the recent conference may be viewed on the Wisconsin Historical Society’s web site:

  3. The Council manages a local history listserve where people may ask questions, seek advice, post events, and more. Join by sending an email to: and type SUBSCRIBE in the body of the email.