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Wisconsin Cheese Makers' Association / Proceedings of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers' Association thirty-third annual convention December 10, 11, 12, 1924 assembled in the Milwaukee Auditorium, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Hubert, W. F.
Early cheese history,   pp. 49-53 PDF (1.2 MB)

Page 50

The next year, in 1859, Hiram Smith, who followed his brother,
John, to Wisconsin in 1847 and located on land just across the road
from his brother, started to take in milk from his neighbors and make
it into cheese. A few years later, in 1861 or 1862, H. S. Conover, a
brother-in-law of Hiram Smith, who also came from Lewis County,
N. Y. to Sheboygan Falls, started to take in milk from his neighbors
and made it into cheese, utilizing a new woodshed. His son, S. H.
Conover, was the cheese maker. S. H. Conover is still engaged in
the cheese business at Plymouth, Wis. The vat and other equipment
used by him were purchased in Little Falls, N. Y. by A. P. Lyman,
a pioneer merchant of Sheboygan, who had intended to start a cheese
factory, but abandoned the idea and sold the outfit to H. S. Conover.
To Chester Hazen belongs the credit of having built the first cheese
factory in Wisconsin. This factory was built in the year 1864 at
Ladoga in the Western part of Fond du Lac county.
In 1864, A. D. DeLand, a native of Fredonia, N. Y., located on a
farm in the town of Lima, Sheboygan County, two and one-half miles
west of Sheboygan Falls. In 1865 he installed a cheese making outfit
in a part of a new building, which he had intended for a barn. Be-
sides the milk of his own herd, he took in some from a few of his
neighbors. The patronage gradually grew larger, and he built a fac-
tory in which he continued to make cheese until 1891.
The first building, however, erected in Sheboygan County particu-
larly for cheese making purposes and independent of any farm dairy,
was built and operated in the year 1867 by L. P. Fischer and M. Mc-
Kinnon. The factory was located two and one-half miles west of She-
boygan Falls on the Sheboygan and Fond du Lac Plank Road. Al-
though this factory has changed hands many times and has been re-
modeled, part of the original building is still standing, and Mr. Mc-
Kinnon is still living in California, where he celebrated his eighty-
fourth birthday this summer.
The first cheese buyer from outside the state, who came to Wiscon-
sin, was R. F. Ridell of the Firm of Bogardus of Chicago. The first
New York buyers were Steven Underhill & F. W. Liggett.
On Nov. 10th, 1870, the Sheboygan Horticulture Society was or-
ganized at Plymouth, Wis. At a meeting of this association, which
was held on October 5th, 1872, a movement was made to proceed to
form a board of trade as a part of that organization. This movement
was carried, and a call was issued for May 22nd, 1873. At this meet-
ing, Hiram Smith was elected President, A. D. DeLand, Secretary,
and B. Holden, Treasurer. It was decided to hold bimonthly meet-
ings during the season. The following cheese was offered for sale:
Hiram Smith -_----_--   ____---- ___-___--50 boxes
Seth Conover -__--__________-----__-_-__50
Price & Strong ----------------------------100
Matthew Bros. -      _-__-_--     _----- 50    "
A. G. Dye -    ___----------         ____60
Total -     _------           __--   310   "

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