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Curtiss-Wedge, F.; Jones, Geo. O. (ed.) / History of Dunn County, Wisconsin

Chapter XXI: miscellany,   pp. 227-246 ff.

Page 227

Local Sites of State, County and City High School Buildings and Grounds
(By C. E. Freeman).
These sites and grounds in this city cover a space equal in area to three and one-
half of our city blocks and beside, one lot and the full width of street one block in
length. They are distributed over five blocks, four of which lie in the heart of the
city in the form of a square and are situated west to east, between Broadway and
Third Street, and north to south between Main Street and Ninth Avenue.
The State Manual Training building, a department of the Stout schools, and
the city high school building, with their surrounding grounds, occupy blocks 53
(south block) and 76 (north block) and that part of Wilson Avenue, now vacated,
that did formerly run east and west between these blocks. There is in this tract
an unbroken parcel of school ground thirty-six rods long, north and south and sixteen
rods wide, east and west, of three and six-tenths acres of land.
The main building of the training school is located on the east side of this paral-
lelogram tract, facing on Second Street, and that of the high school on the west
side thereof, fronting on Broadway. These two buildings are placed squarely
across that part of Wilson Avenue that formerly extended between these two blocks
53 and 76. They are connected by a long, enclosed, elevated and commodious
passageway stretching from the second story of one building to the second story
of the other, running lengthwise over the strip of vacated street.
Before the erection of these buildings, the city resident and the stranger on its
streets, turning into upper Wilson Avenue, from north or south, looked, if he
would, westward down the avenue and out of its end into the sunshine high over
the river basin and of the valley of Gilbert's Creek on to the distant hills and
bluffs. The sky line of these hills and bluffs and the upper portion of their densely
wooded eastern slopes presented a pleasing view, the like of which is not to be
seen through the end opening of any other of the city streets.
The city having acquired title to these blocks 53 and 76, the city council in the
plenitude of its power, gained largely by its grip of actual possession of these blocks,
vacated the intervening street, and now, he that is on upper Wilson Avenue, looks
westward along its open way into a cul-de-sac, closed by the brickwall of the training
school building. Its dark bricked up end was made darker by the shadows cast
therein by the surrounding walls of other school buildings.
The once distinguishing feature of this avenue, the view beyond its western end,
must remain only a remembrance, personal to those who over 20 years ago looked
out upon it. It was a vista that may be mentioned but cannot be visualized by
description so that the reader or hearer can see it, even with the mind's eye.
The four-story domestic science building of The Stout Institute covers the whole
of the south one-half of block 75. Its main entrance, seldom used by students or
visitors, faces south on Wilson Avenue, while its end entrances on Second and on
Third streets serve the constant daily use of the building.
The site of this building was given to the state. The plan for its construction
was made to cover every available inch of the site. The plan being exhibited, the
adjacent property owners were asked to give, from the north one-half of the
block, sufficient land to afford light and air for the back part of the building and
for access thereto by a public alley.
A sovereign asks, and the asking is intended as, and is interpreted to be a request.
The necessary land was given and the north wall of this state building stands flush
with the north boundary line of the land at first given.
Connected with the educational management of this state school, in its domestic
science department, are two buildings known as the Homemakers' school. These

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