Wisconsin Historical Society

Property Record

N60 W5314-6 COLUMBIA RD

Architecture and History Inventory
N60 W5314-6 COLUMBIA RD | Property Record | Wisconsin Historical Society
NAMES
Historic Name:Ernst Hilgen House
Other Name:
Contributing: Yes
Reference Number:13297
PROPERTY LOCATION
Location (Address):N60 W5314-6 COLUMBIA RD
County:Ozaukee
City:Cedarburg
Township/Village:
Unincorporated Community:
Town:
Range:
Direction:
Section:
Quarter Section:
Quarter/Quarter Section:
PROPERTY FEATURES
Year Built:1869
Additions:
Survey Date:1988
Historic Use:house
Architectural Style:Italianate
Structural System:
Wall Material:Limestone
Architect:
Other Buildings On Site:
Demolished?:No
Demolished Date:
DESIGNATIONS
National/State Register Listing Name: Columbia Historic District
National Register Listing Date:1/22/1992 12:00:00 AM
State Register Listing Date:10/25/1991 12:00:00 AM
National Register Multiple Property Name:
NOTES
Additional Information:A 'site file' exists for this property. It contains additional information such as correspondence, newspaper clippings, or historical information. It is a public record and may be viewed in person at the Wisconsin Historical Society, Division of Historic Preservation-Public History.

PAIRED BRACKETS AT EAVES SEGMENTAL ARCH LINTELS W/KEYSTONES SEGMENTAL ARCH ENTRANCE W/TRANSOM AND SIDELIGHTS SCROLL WORK IN PORCH IN WING

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND:
The family that constructed this house was Ernst and Ida Meyer Hilgen. Ernst Hilgen was born in Oldenburg in 1831. He was the nephew of Fred Hilgen, the founder of Cedarburg. He came to Cedarburg before 1850 and apprenticed in his uncle's flour mill. In 1852 he married Christine Wulff who died three years later. Shortly thereafter he married Ida Meyer who was born in either Oldenburg or Holland in 1831 and came to the U.S. ca 1847. In 1864 Hilgen bought an interest in the Columbia mill, which he sold out twenty years later to start in the grocery business in a building near the mill. He died one year later (1885). For a while he had also run a store in conjunction with the mill (ca 1874), but it was closed when it was destroyed by fire. This house usually housed at least a couple of boarders. In 1860 it was home to H. Rappold, a 40 year old cooper and Adam Gleisman, a 30 year old cooper from Bavaria. Given that Gleisman and Rappold were living with the Hilgen's, it is probable that Hilgen encouraged them in the cooper trade to serve the flour mill. In 1870 two teamsters and a carpenter who worked in the mill lived here, along with a woman who worked in the woolen mill. In 1884 Ernst sold the house to his son, Ernst, Jr. Ernst had worked as a clerk in a general store and later was a bookkeeper for Hilgen Manufacturing's Milwaukee office. Ernst sold the property in 1892 to the Schaefer family, who had also purchased the Columbia Mill. In 1923 Jacob Schaefer, still a miller, and his wife Hattie lived in the house.

In 1884 when Ernst, Sr. was trying to sell the house, he placed an ad in the Cedarburg News Weekly, which stated: "A Beautiful Residence For Sale...large two-story stone...30x40 with large kitchen attached...1/4 mile east of village...5 acres...."
Bibliographic References:ZIMMERMANN, RUSSELL "THE HERITAGE GUIDEBOOK" (HERITAGE BANKS 1976), p. 204. Keystone over front door. Wendt. Cedarburg News Weekly, 01/16/1884. 1923 City Directory. Tax Records. U.S. Census, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880. Legend and Lore, p. 55.
RECORD LOCATION
Wisconsin Architecture and History Inventory, Division of Historic Preservation, Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, Wisconsin

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