"Wisconsin-Happy Festival State", by Eve Phillips. My husband and I love to travel in the state of Wisconsin where we live and get great pictures on the way. My name is Laurie Kutil and photography has become a great passion of mine since 2010. One thing I have learned in researching each town before visiting it is that, "Every town has it's story". When I do uncover those stories by connecting with local residents, our experience becomes so much richer. In turn, sharing the stories with you brings me joy :)
We attended Milton’s Civil War Reenactment and Encampment on this spring day. We enjoyed our first visit to Milton last year and thought we would enjoy going to this festival. It used to be in Evansville but now moved to Milton. Some tents were set up behind the Milton House where the soldiers were mustering for battle at Milton College up the street.
After lining up in formation, we slowly marched to the college.
We arrived at the college, stopping many passersby in their track who may not have known about this event 🙂 Let’s watch some of their drills.
After we enjoyed watching them practice, they posed for a picture by the Beloit College sign.
We marched back to the encampment at Goodrich Park where activity was picking up. Someone was even cooking over an open fire. People in period clothing read stories to the kids about life in the 1860’s, children played in period clothing also.
It was fun looking back in time, knowing the Milton House was a part of this scene then, recreated now. We saw a lady crossing the track in period costume. You could almost imagine it was a steam train instead of a modern diesel.
Many trees in fact, grow in Brooklyn. The village of 1,413 is a designated Tree City since 2013. Located in both Dane and Green County, it’s a great place to visit close to Madison and Oregon. It was named Brooklyn by settler Hiram Capwell after he succeeded in luring the railroad to lay track through his property.
We first went to Liberty Pole Hill Park, a former Civil War recruitment site.
A historic bell can be found outside at the fire department.
Edmund Andrews, a prominent businessman from New York, had the house built in 1976. It is on 100 West Main.
Brooklyn used to be the site of the Capitol Chair factory, a stone building near the tracks behind the Edmund Andrews house. The structure still stands.
Brooklyn also has an active community center.
Downtown is the Brooklyn Jacycee Childrens Park, lots of fun for the kids!
Not far from here is the village gazebo near the tracks.
We also discovered the former blacksmith shop nearby.
We tend to gravitate towards historic churches also. and the Brooklyn Community United Methodist Church has beautiful stained-glass windows. It was built in 1902. One of the ladies working there happened to see me admiring the church from the outside and invited me in to look around and to see the beautiful windows from inside. Thank you!
Shop at Market Place Trash & Treasures store for previously-owned items.
Its also Wisconsin’s Outdoor Recreation Destination too!
Boscobel is located in Grant County, not far from Muscoda. This area was first discovered by French explorers Louis Joliet and Jacque Marquette in 1673. “Bosq” in French means “wood” and”belle” means “beautiful”. Read about the community history here, as well as Grant County. Today its a thriving community of 3000 ready to welcome visitors (including us) and new residents alike.
Turkey hunting takes place often several times a year. Contact the DNR for turkey season and licensing. Boscobel has many places for lodging, including the Sands Motel.
Our day began there by crossing the Blaine Bridge over the Wisconsin River on Highway 61.
Boscobel has many historic buildings and monuments. The first one we saw was The Rock School, a century-old school still in use today.
Next, we saw the Grand Army of the Republic Hall (G.A.R.), possibly the only remaining standing G.A.R. Hall in Wisconsin, or even the Midwest. It was placed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places on 12-27-07. Members sponsor Muskets and Memories every August, one of the largest Civil War reenactment events in the Midwest. They also have artifacts inside to see when open.
In nearby Memorial Park stands a Monument dedicated to Civil War Soldiers.
Before exploring the rest of town, we had lunch at the Unique Cafe.
Original owners of the cafe opened in 1932 and have been owned by Doyle and Nancy Lewis since 1983. They are the nicest people and will serve you a great breakfast or lunch. Pies are their specialty, and we had a piece of French Silk pie, yum!
Doyle proudly showed us the Packer Room downstairs and posed for a picture with us.
Call them at 608-375-4465 if you want to reserve the room for your party.
Lunch done, we continued to explore their main street, Wisconsin Avenue.
We stopped at the historic Central House-Boscobel Hotel, also known as the Central house. This hotel is where two guests that stayed here originated the Gideon Bible. The current owners of the hotel is Charles Griesel and his wife, Dr. Jean, purchased in 2009. Their son Jim took us up to the Gideon Room, #19 on the 2nd floor. Thanks Jim! Call 608-375-4714 to schedule a tour.
Before saying goodbye to Jim, he showed us a picture of his great-great-great uncle, who built the hotel in 1865.
We enjoyed a bakery treat at Violet Dreams Bakery. (closed)
The historic Boscobel Depot Museum is on 800 Wisconsin Ave. The track next to it is still in use, but only for freight trains since 1960.
Behind the depot is Depot Park, where a tank is on display.