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Wilbert, Carl F. / History of the town of Mequon
([ca. 1990?])

Early settlers


The Bonniwells, consisting of an aged mother, with six
sons and one daughter, settled in the Town in 1839. The
first school house (on the present Bonniwell school site)
was erected in their settlement and within one year after
their arrival.
Wm. F. Cpitz stated that it was in the spring of 1839,
that he concluded to leave Germany. His party consisted
of himself and his wife, his father, and mother, Adolph
Zimmerman and his wife, (the latter being a sister of
Opitz). On arrival in Milwaukee, they at once proceeded
to prospect the country. It resulted in their settlement
in the Town of Nequon in August, 1839. They entered five
80 acre parcels of which Opitz took a quarter section,
Adolph Zimmerman a quarter section, and the father of Wm.
F. Opitz, 80 acres. This land was in Section 22, near the
Green Bay Rd.
Soon after the arrival of Mr. Opitz, a large group of
Germans settled in 1839 in the western part of the Town
of Mequon. This was a group of old Lutherans under the
leadership of Pastor Krause, and was known as the Freistadt
Colony. However, the real tide of Germans did not migrate
into the colony until two years later. This settlement
grew very Last. A church and a school were built in the
spring of 1840. This building was 20 feet wide and 30
feet long and $45.50 for material, the labor was contri-
buted by the members of the congregation. This was the
first Lutheran Church erected in Wisconsin (more about


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