Shattuck, S. F., et. al (ed.) / A history of Neenah
The 1840's to 1860's inclusive, pp. 13-20 PDF (2.0 MB)
THE, 1840'S To i86o's Nc., VE H!' IOHIi(,HTl'NG; of the era covered by Mr. Cunningham's his- tory may appear to some as a twice-told tale. On the other hand, a clean pick-up of the story at the year 1878 would leave much to be desired. Therefore, we record a rundown of a few "firsts" and other significant data, with the suggestion that all readers add to our efforts as their memories are jogged or as they come upon pertinent facts and interesting incidents in the course of their conversations and reading. The First Town Meeting The first town meeting in the recently opened settlement of "Winne- bago Rapids" occurred in 1847, one year after the area was open to purchase. It preceded by 26 years Neenah's incorporation as a city. Associated with these dates is the year 1848, when the territory of Wis- consin became a state. Carly Social Organizations As may be imagined, various forms of social and mutually helpful organizations sprang up in the pioneer settlement. The first of many such groupings seems to have been the Lodge of Odd Fellows, char- tered in 1849. This lodge continued for ten years, when it surrendered its charter. In February 1870 the charter was reinstated and the or- ganization thenceforth continued live and serves to this day. A lodge of Free and Accepted Masons was organized in Menasha, as Lodge 61, in early I8s. Menasha and Neenah men constituted its membership. Early meetings were held in Menasha, but since October of that year (1855) meetings have been held on the Neenah side of the line. The Masonic Temple at 241 East Wisconsin Avenue was dedi- cated in 1926. 13
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