History of Dale, Wisconsin
From: History of Outagamie County, Wilsonsin
Thomas H. Ryan - Editor in Chief
Goodspeed Historical Allociates, Publishers
Chicago 1911

Town of Dale. - At a meeting of the county board of supervisors at Grand Chute, December 16, 1851, the following resolutions were moved by Mr. Wakefield (Hortonia) and seconded by Mr. Darling (Greenville): "Resolved, that so much of the town of Hortonia as is embraced in township 21, range 15 east, be set apart and organized as a separate town to be known and designated by the name of 'Medina,' such separation to take effect from and after the last, day of March, next. The first town meeting for the election of officers for said town of Medina, and for transacting other town business, to be held at the schoolhouse in District No. 1 in said town on the day designated by law for annual town meetings in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and fifty one. Thereupon an adjournment was voted until half past six o'clock this evening." At the evening session: "The resolution last under consideration, namely, to set apart certain territory in the town of Hortonia in a new town to be called Medina, came up to order for discussion. Petitions praying the honorable board to create a new town in accordance with above resolution were read and a petition praying for a different division of the town, or to let it remain in its, present situation, was also submitted. After some lengthy remarks by Mr. Wakefield, in favor of the resolution, and some' brief ones from Mr. Hine against it, the yeas and nays being called for, the resolution was passed by the following vote: Yeas, Rynders, Darling and Wakefield - 3; nays, Robinson and Hine." January 10, 1852, Alden S. Sanborn records: "I have this day forwarded by mail to the Secretary of State at Madison a true copy of the resolution of the board, passed December 16, A. D. 1851; as appears of record of that date creating and organizmg the town of Medina." February 23, 1852, the resolution creating the town of Medina was repealed by a unanimous vote of the board. No further action was recorded until the session of. November 17, 1853, when a petition of W. W. Benedict and _others, for a new town to be set off from Hortonia was presented and referred to a: committee, who the following day reported an ordinance creating a new town of that territory embraced in T. 21 N., R. 15 E., to be set apart and formed into a new town to be called Dale, and authorizing an election for the first Tuesday of April, 1854, which was adopted. The following day, by a resolution, the ordinance dividing Hortonia and creating Dale was so amended as to make the section line running west from between sections 1 and 12, township 21,: range 15, the dividing line between the two towns.

As late as the fall of 1847 it is claimed by many no white man had so much as erected a temporary shanty. But December 28 Arthur C. Minto, John Stanfield and Thomas Swan built a shanty of cedar logs in which they camped that Winter while they got out rails for fencing. This shanty was roofed with troughs made by grooving split cedar logs, which were laid side by side, grooved side up, then the joints covered by troughs laid grooved side down. Such a roof was wind, rain and snow proof and could be made without nails. A number of such shanties were built by rail makers in the Rat River cedar swamp in Winnebago county, but this was the first recorded in Dale.

Near the last of March, 1848, Zebediah Hyde, Lewis Hyde and Alva McCrary chopped out a track sufficient to permit an ox team and wagon to wind in and out among the trees, on a land looking tour, locating on the site of the village of Medina, and there built the first settler's cabin in Dale. The elder Hyde lived on the northeast corner of section 26, Lewis Hyde on the southeast corner of section 23, while Alva McCrary had the southwest corner of section 24.

Samuel Young came to Dale in 1849 His four sons all were early 'settlers, William buying in section 35, the first land sold in the town, April 12, 1848, and settling the same spring. His shanty soon became a stopping place for travelers going north, and to accommodate them he built a frame house: In 1855 he bought the land Zebediah Hyde had settled seven years before and built a large hotel. This became a landmark known far and wide, and the locality was known as Young's Corners, now Medina. With the Youngs came W. M. Emmonds, a brother-in-law. John Hall and family, William and Susan Hall, came to Dale in June, 1849, securing the southeast quarter of section 35. Learning that employment could be had, they went up to Government zMill on Little Wolf. remaining until October, when they returned to Dale and, providing a shanty for winter, began clearing. At the same time with the Halls came Benjamin Williams and family, his son-in-law, Solomon Fielding, and his son, Samuel Williams, and wife. The elder Williams located the southwest corner of section 22, now a part of Dale village plat; Samuel Williams and Solomon Fielding selected section 28, assigning their entries to Samuel Parsons. The Williams family did not remain long in Dale, removing to Waupaca county.

"Eberhard Buck and Andrew, his son, came to the woods of Dale in May, 1848," says Herman T. Buck of Hortonville, "as soon as the state was admitted to the Union. They brought an axe, an umbrella, a gun and a barrel of flour, and located on section 15. Neither had ever chopped a tree, and here on their land not a tree had been cut." Conrad G. Meiner and Joe Boyer came at the same time to the same section and Conrad gave Joe G. Meiner half of his quarter section if Joe would stay with them. Josephus Wakefield was early, and in 1851 represented the town Hortonia in the county board. Rev. John Rinehart, the pioneer preacher, came November, 1849, from Ohio and settled near Medina. He held the first religious meetings in town and taught the school at Medina, probably the first winter term 1850-51. About 1853 he removed to Hortonville. his permanent home. Though his stay in Dale was short, he was a factor in the development of the settlement through his preaching and teaching and religious influence. Like other pioneers, he was dependent on his labor for his daily bread, and endured his full share of the privations common to all. He had when he came, says Philo Root, ninety five cents, which he paid for lumber to fix a shanty to live in. He had to chop and make shingles to buy cornmeal for food, which was all he had for himself and wife and four children the whole of that winter except a round or strip of pork to start on. While the country was new and ministers scarce, he traveled on foot as far as New London and Shiocton to preach. It is told of him that having a preaching appointment across Rat river he was in the habit of wading the water on the marsh. In freezing cold weather he broke the ice with a stick, waded through and reached his congregation' with his clothing frozen on him.

James Wilson, 1849, bought in section 13 and settled that year or the following spring. Thomas Doughty lived on the northwest corner of section 25 about 1850. Richard Bottrell, about 1849, came to section 21 and in 1851 married Miss Otis. H. Greenfield and family came in 1849 to the vicinity of Medina, later removing to Greenville. Peter Hugunin about that time lived near Greenfield. Edward Spicer, about 1851, lived a mile west and a mile north of *Medina, and a year or so later John Bunce came from Michigan, settling at first not far from Spicer's, and later on in Hortonville and Medina road. Charles G. Vaughn had a large family of boys and lived on Appleton and Wolf River road a mile west of Dale. William Benedict lived a half mile west of Dale. William Hubbard lived on the county line in section 35. "Bill Hubbard, Bill Young and Bill Hall, living in the same section, were called by friends the three bad Bills of the county." Harvey Blue, Tom Fielding. Enos Otis and Garman were all here in 1853. Otis settled on the southeast corner of section 21, on which a part of the village plat of Dale is laid. It was one of the best locations in town. After getting it into good shape, he sold to Hazelburn; afterward it was owned by Leppla Virgil B. Prentice and his son George came in 1853: Stephen Balliet came the same year, settling on the northeast quarter section 28, A small creek; the outlet of Squaw lake, crossed his farm, in which he put a dam and built a sawmill. David Zehner came about the same time and bought in the northeast quarter of section 27. The McHughs, Mulroys and Carneys lived in the northwestern part of town in the early '50s. Conrad A. Long had been an early settler, "starved out before 1853, but returned later to stay."

Twenty families arrived and located there between the fall of 1853 and June, 1854, The only complaint at this time was a lack of good roads connecting Dale with Appleton,

Hubbard Hill lived on the main road between the county line and Medina Cornelius Koontz had located on section 33 and had a sawmill about ready for operation in the fall of 1854, though the little creek could only furnish power in the spring and flood time. Hiram Rhodes was the first of the name to arrive, Edward, Elias, Andrew. and Samuel came about 1855. Solomon Rhodes, the father, was past middle age and did not so actively engage in clearing and farming as did his sons, Andrew and Elias bought the Doughty tract in section 25 and built the Rhodes hotel, Gilbert Bacon came with Hiram Rhodes, later returning to Antigo,

Wroe & Dunbar had a store at Medina, it is said, before 1855, John Henry Bottensek came in 1854, settled a tract sections 14 and 23. Henry Balliet came in 1854 also, Jonathan and Stephen Leiby, William Leiby, Reuben Radek and wife and Isaac Degal came October, 1856. There were six sons and six daughters in the Leiby family, and all save one daughter settled on farms in Dale. George Leiby, the father, came 1860. Ransom P. Griswold came in June, 1855; Ezra Kellogg about that time or a little later; Joachim Herbst came to Greenville 1854 and to Dale 1856; Anton Graef came to the northwestern part of town 1855; Wendell Dietz about the same time, lived straight north of Dale village; Joseph Kelsey lived in section 12 on land he bought 1853; "Wenzel Moder, 1856,

Early in 1858 a Lutheran church was organized in the town of Medina and preparations to erect a suitable building for the society were at once made. Medina was pronounced one of the best towns of the county, In. January, 1859, the congregation of Rev. I, T, Suffron of, the town of Dale made him a donation visit and presented him a purse of $62 and a supply of provisions, Among the prominent families in the town of Dale in 1860 were those of Rhodes, Lewis Young, Balliett, Koonz, Williams, Bloomer, Jewell, Hubbard, Greenfield, Hugunin, Nutter, Bills, Stein, Metlau, Graef, Prentice, Enos; Fielding, Besse, Bunce, Bothell, Austin and Bishop

In September, 1868, a son of J. E. Austin of Dale. while plowing on his father's farm, struck a mass of copper ore, which on being dug out, was found to weigh 432 pounds. The Crescent stated that it was almost pure and announced that it would be exhibited at' the approaching county fair. The improvement of live stock and conversion of farms to dairying in progress at this time meant far more wealth to Dale than finding a copper mine. A postoffice was established at Dale village in 1876. John Leppla was first postmaster, The M. E. Church in Dale was dedicated October 1, 1876. William Rowbottom was pastor.

The Dale brook trout ponds were famous by 1878, The proprietors were Young & Worden. The ponds adjoined the village of Medina and were excavated in the bottom lands through which a living stream ran, the supply of water being unfailing There was a fish house, several ponds and islands; all the ponds were artificial and had cost a large sum of money. At about this time the first cheese factory was established in Dale,

Joseph Moder came 1857; George Moder a year or two later, the Nielands about 1858, Augustus Grossman came about this time, entered land in school section;,the Van Alstines came 1856, Herman Buck about 1857 and Charles F. Buck about 1859; Lawrence Linton came about this time. James McClatchie was assessor in 1857.

When the Wisconsin Central Railway was built, the site of Dale village was farmland. Medina secured a station one and a half miles distant, which did not afford fair facilities for the town, Stephen Balliet and David Zehner gave land for depot grounds and the citizens of the vicinity raised a sum of money and induced the road to make a station as near the center of the town as reached by the road. The village was platted by John H. Leppla, William Degal, David Zehner and Mrs. Nellie Ballet, The village is not incorporated, but under the town government has good streets and walks, fire engine and hose and a good schoolhouse, Numerous stores carry extensive stocks, which, being located in one of the best farming communities in the, county, enjoy an enviable patronage, The professions are well represented. There is a newspaper. Several excellent frateriiities meet the social requirements and three churches supply the spiritual needs,

Religious services were held in the early days of the settlement at the homes of settlers, and later in the schoolhouses: These services, of a non denominational character, were attended by the religiously inclined settlers, John Rinehart probably held the first meetings in Dale, though in the early '50s Keval, Clinton and Mitchell held services, A union Sunday school was organized at Medina. John Jewell, superintendent, and this continued several years until the M. E. Church was established, when it was reorganized as a Methodist school. Evangelists, circuit preachers and presiding elders of the Methodists held services at various times, usually in schoolhouses, These services resulted in the organization of a church at Medina, John Dey mentions Rev. Walker Baldock and Bullock as among the early preachers, A Sunday school under supervision of the church was organized; which was joined by most of 'the members of a non denominational Sunday school, opened some years previously in the adjoining town of Greerrville. St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran congregation was organized, 1859, by Rev. Th, Jaeckel. who preached to eleven families. In. 1870, Rev. O. Spehr and the following year Rev. H. J. Haak, both of Hortonville, preached to them. From 1874 to 1880, T. R. Gensike; from 1880 to 1895, A. Kluge, since whom Rev. Gustav E. Boettcher has attended them, No resident minister has ever been called Until 1888 services Were held in the same building with the Reformed Church, one and a half miles east of Dale; at that time there were thirteen full families and two ladies. The congregation now numbers forty eight voting members and nine women. No parochial school is as yet maintained, but preparations are being made to erect a building this present year, with prospect of the congregation soon calling its own minister

During the decade beginning 1850 several Pennsylvania German families came to the vicinity, to' whom Rev. Lienkaemper preached and organized into a Reformed Church, which with a Lutheran congregation built a church 1863-4 a half mile west of Medina village. Rev. Lienkaemper was succeeded as pastor by Rev, E. T. H. Woehler, 1865; E. W. Henschen, 1873 to 1875: H. W. Stienecker was ordained 1877 and served until 1892; Rev, Muehlmeier, his successor, remained until 1898; he was followed by Rev, Zenk; Rev. Kurtz in 1900 in turn was succeeded 1907 by Rev, Stienecker, a former pastor, who now ministers to the congregation, In 1878 a parsonage was built near the church, and the following year the interest of the Lutherans in the church was purchased and the building removed to its present site in village of Dale, and during the pastorate of Rev, Muehlmeier the parsonage was also established there, In 1909, an addition to the church was built on the south end for school and other purposes. The parochial school begun by Rev, Henchen has been maintained by his successors during vacations of district schools, The congregation now numbers some forty families, eighty to ninety communicant and forty unconfirmed members.

The first schoolhouse in town was built seventy rods south of Young's Corners, now Medina, spring 1850. It was built of logs, had a shake roof, but was large enough for thirty pupils, There was, no sawmill nearer than Horton's, so benches were made by putting legs in split basswood logs, Mrs. Haney Greenfield taught the first school that summer Under the school system in vogue in the early days of the county, each town elected a superintendent of schools, whose duty it was to examine prospective teachers to ascertain their qualifications for the positions sought, Philo Root, one of Dale's earliest pedagogues, tells of his first examination: "I called on the superintendent, telling him that Harvey Greenfield and Peter Hugunin had engaged me to teach their school, and I wanted him to examine me, He replied: 'I have no doubt you know a good deal more than I do? However, he asked me several questions relative to my experience in school work, gave me a problem in short 'division and wrote the license," School government seemed paramount to all other qualifications, and if one could teach the "Rs" and was himself a speller and possessed the ability to get along with a school, his qualification was ample, That the pupils in the old log schoolhouses did learn is evident,

The first cemetery in Dale was about a half mile west of Medina.

"Town of Dale. - Young & Warden spent $400 this year building and stocking the Dale fisheries, W. H. Wroe does largest general mercantile business in the western, part of the county. V. & C. Leppla carry on extensive wagon making and blacksmithing business. James Kennedy operates a sawmill, W, H, Wroe is engaged in drug business at the Corners, A. Alton manufactures and sells harness, William H, Spengler, who does a large business as general dealer, expended $1,000 during the season in enlarging and improving his buildings. Henry Huettl does general blacksmithing. Jacob Vlein has a small tannery and markets good leather. Patrick Halpin has wagon and blacksmith shop. Total amount of business done in the town for the year, $40,000."- (Post, December 13, 1877,)

The Dale Recorder was established in 1895 by Joseph Senftenberg, who continued its publication about eight years. Then after an interval of a year or, more, Harry H, Mollon brought a plant from Oshkosh and resumed the publication. The Recorder is independent politically, devoted to the interests of Dale and vicinity.

Dale Camp, No 3208, M. W. A., was organized September, 1895, with nineteen charter members F. W. Kundiger, V. C.; Sam R. Wason, clerk, The order has now a membership of eighty four, carrying insurance aggregating approximately $125,000, Meetings are held the second and last Tuesdays of each month in M. W. A. Hall, a handsome, large building erected for general public meetings and entertainments by a stock association composed entirely of members belonging to the order, Present Camp officers are F. G. Emmons, V. C.; B. Nelson, clerk, A camp of Royal Neighbors, auxiliary to M. W. A., was organized January, 1897, with about thirty members, Wisconsin was unable to give insurance until two years later, by which time but few retained membership, A deputy succeeded in 1895 in raising the membership to eighteen, of whom several were social, and the membership dwindled to ten beneficiary members, Since January, 1911, by the efforts of the secretary, twenty five have been added, making the membership thirty five, The officers: Mrs. Bell Heuer, Oracle; Emma Nieman, Vice; Mabel Heuer, Recorder; Nellie Heuer, Receiver,

The First State Bank of Dale was started in 1902 with a capital of $25,000, afterward reduced to $15,000. Peter Huth, president; Jacob J. O'Godnigg, cashier. February 26, 1906, the First National Bank of Dale, its successor, was organized with W, K. Rideout, R. H. Edwards, Charles Barber, George A. Sareau, A. T, Hening, W. H. Spengler, stockholders and organizers, and begun business ten days later with W. K. Rideout, prsident; A. T. Hening, vice president; W. H. Spengler, cashier, Mr. Sareau soon withdrew - and later G. Reinert became president, making the present management.

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