Making a path to history
Brick walkway planned in Weyauwega
By Angie Landsverk
The Weyauwega Area Historical Society wants to create a brick walkway to the Little Red School House in Weyauwega’s Community Park.
The nonprofit organization is selling two different sizes of bricks for a path to the school’s front door.
It costs $50 to sponsor a 4-by-8-inch brick 0, while the cost to sponsor an 8-by-8-inch brick is $100.
There is an additional $15 cost to add graphic elements.
Mary Jane Baehman said close to 500 bricks are needed for the overall project.
She is president of the historical society.
Baehman said she got the idea for the project after seeing a Poy Sippi church place bricks around an old steeple.
“Last year is when we opened up the opportunity,” she said.
The organization increased the effort this year after having to postpone its planned programs due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Marietta Paap said the group had a lot planned for 2020.
She is the organization’s historian.
Paap said a program was planned about Wisconsin being the first to sign on to the 19th Amendment.
Others were planned about World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.
The historical society does not know if it will be able to host any programs this year.
In addition, members planned to interview the community’s own historians.
One was completed.
“That’s why we’re working on this,” Baehman said as she pointed to the school house.
There has always been grass in front of the school house.
The walkway project provides an opportunity to memorialize those who are deceased or alive, she said.
Events and businesses may also be honored.
There are several ways to place an order for a brick.
People may visit thatsmybrick.com/weyauwega to order one.
Order blanks are also found on the historical society’s Facebook page.
In addition, people may call Baehman at 920-538-2025 for information.
There are various color choices for the bricks.
The historical society plans to have Faulks Brothers Construction place a base layer for the walkway next spring, she said.
Silver Mist Garden Center, of Waupaca, will lay the bricks, Baehman said.
“How much happens next spring depends on how many people purchase bricks,” she said.
Baehman said the words people choose to have on their bricks are guaranteed for life by the company they are working with on the project.
If people need help coming up with words for a brick, historical society members are available to help them.
The organization appreciates receiving orders by early May 2021.
“It’s going to take a month to get them,” Baehman explained.
The Little Red School House Museum opens in early June for its summer season.
“We were hoping by the time we open in the spring, we could have the dedication,” she said.
This year’s season was recently completed.
However, Paap noted the historical society is interested in opening the school house for elementary teachers to do instruction there in small groups.
Teachers and others interested in seeing the school may call 715-281-6310 to make an appointment.
Built in 1861, the one-room school house was originally located about 1 1/2 miles south of Weyauwega, on County Trunk X.
The school was abandoned after the 1906-07 school year, as the number of students did not justify covering the cost of a teacher.
Up until 1935, it was used as a meeting place.
In 1960, the idea to preserve the school began being discussed.
Mr. and Mrs. George Kneisler donated the school from their property, with the local chamber of commerce financing the move.
The city agreed to have the school house in its Community Park and to promote and support it.
After it was placed in the park, people began donating items for inside the school house.
The Weyauwega Area Historical Society was established in 2006, after the community’s sesquicentennial.
Baehman said a diligent group of people has been involved through the years.
Each member has different gifts, talents and interests, she said.
“We’re always looking for more members,” Baehman said.
The organization currently meets at 2 p.m. on usually the fourth Tuesday of the month at the new park shelter in the park.
“Our focus with the historical society is to be educational,” she said. “We make every effort to keep history alive.”