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Compiled and Edited by Michael R. Reilly

Updated 01/10/2006

    The first plow is said to have been brought in by D. Bonham. At that time, the settlers went to Milwaukee to get their plows sharpened and repaired, which had to be done very frequently, for on much of the land grew what was called red root brush, and the ground, being literally filled with these tough roots, was very had to break.

    With the increasing number of people who came to this area to work, it is only natural that there must be other businesses to tend the needs of these settlers. Probably the busiest was the blacksmith, for sharp drills were needed every morning in the quarry businesses and every boss wanted his ready before the day's work began.

   About 1839 or 1840, Rice Gale came in and put up a blacksmith shop on Section 35, near the house of D. Bonham. Mr. Gale was followed by Mr. Nottingham, who built one nearby.

1850 - Census taken August 28, 1850

Thomas Paine, 28, Blacksmith, son of Thomas, 50, farmer, England

Charles Cooling, Blacksmith, 31, England

Richard Cooling, 37, Blacksmith, England

STEPHEN3 WEAVER (WILLIAM F.2, JAMES1) was born June 25, 1810 in Sussex Co. , England, and died August 06, 1894 in Pewaukee, Waukesha, Wisconsin. He married (1) ELIZABETH MAXON Abt. 1830 in Kingsbury, Broome Co., New York. She was born in Delaware Co., New York, and died December 1832 in Oneida County, New York. He married (2) PHOEBE MAXON August 13, 1833 in Delaware Co., New York. She was born March 18, 1816 in Courtright, Delaware, New York, and died April 10, 1886 in Pewaukee, Waukesha, Wisconsin. He married (3) SARAH HANKEY Abt. 1887.
Burial: Forest Hill Cemetery, Pewaukee, Waukesha, Wisconsin
Emigration 1: 1830, Oneida Co., NY, then to Kingsbury, Broome Co., NY.
Emigration 2: 1837, Originally came to Wisconsin in 1837 but stayed only a few months.
Emigration 3: 1855, Returned to Wisconsin
Occupation: Blacksmith
Residence 1: Pewaukee
Residence 2: Abt. 1832, Lived at first in Delaware Co., New York with first wife.
Residence 3: Bet. 1839 - 1855, Moved to Chenango Co., New York with Phoebe.


Thomas Paine, 37, England, Blacksmith

Peter Harris, 23, Blacksmith, Scotland

Charles Cooling, 41, Master Blacksmith, England

James Meiddleton, 27, Blacksmith, England

William Middleton, 36, Master Blacksmith, England

John A. Carver, 24, blacksmith, New York

    Before long Sussex was known throughout the Wisconsin Territory as "that English settlement". It became a typical English village. The Episcopal church [St. Alban's] around which the cabins began to spring up soon came to be the center of the burying ground for the village, following English churchyard customs. Years later - in 1864 - when the church was outgrown and moved away to be made into a blacksmith shop, after the new stone structure has been put up north of the village's "four-corners", the graveyard occupied the center of the community. It still does, and the newer residents, who have not had associations with a former age there, say that "Sussex can never amount to anything with a graveyard at its' heart".

    Lisbon: School District No. 10 - Annette C. Purdy, Teacher/ 43 scholars. No schoolhouse site to speak of. The 27(?) x 9 house is located on the street, bounded on the north by a blacksmith shop; on the east by a barnyard dog kennel; and on the south by a potato patch. The sound of hammer and anvil--the yelling of dogs--the neighing of horses--"the rumbling of wheels o'er the stony street"--the dirt of the road mingling with the fumes of the barn-yard and smoke of the forge, make it just about as unfit a place for a school as can wee be imagined. The Prospect Hill establishment is quite respectable in comparison with the Sussex institution. Miss Purdy is doing as well as could be expected under the circumstances. She is a superior scholar, a competent teacher, and is worthy of a better schoolhouse to labor in. Waukesha Freeman, July 1, 1862

Blacksmith Humor (Waukesha Freeman, August 4, 1863)

        Why is a blacksmith like a safe steed?

        Because one is a horse-shoer, and the other is a sure horse.

THOMAS CAMPBELL (DONALD1) was born November 17, 1829, and died October 06, 1899. He married LOUISA WINN June 13, 1856, daughter of GEORGE WINN and LAVINA ?. She was born in Lockport, NY, and died November 14, 1905.
Emigration: August 04, 1854, From the port of Greenlock, (?) onboard the sailing ship Hinford of Glasglow
Masonic: Bet. 1878 - 1879, Master of Sussex Ashlar Lodge
Occupation 1: Bef. 1854, Blacksmith
Occupation 2: Bet. May 1854 - 1857, Blacksmith in Grand Trunck Forest, Canada
Occupation 3: Bet. May 1857 - March 1863, Blacksmith in Ozaukee County
Occupation 4: Aft. 1863, Blacksmith and wagon business was conducted in structures to the west of his home on Main St. in Sussex.


Charles Heinm, 27, blacksmith, Hanover, Germany

James Wilkins, 59, blacksmith, England

Thomas Campbell, 40, Blacksmith, Scotland

Alexander Turner, 22, blacksmith, Scotland

David Harrington, 21, blacksmith, Wisconsin

Charles Cooling, 51, blacksmith, England

Warren Horess, 21, blacksmith, New York

Adolph Sperendiano, 34, blacksmith, Prussia

DONALD ROSS CAMPBELL (THOMAS2, DONALD1) was born June 02, 1859 in Port Washington, Ozaukee, Wisconsin, and died September 18, 1925. He married ELLA SIMMONS January 22, 1884, daughter of VOLNEY SIMMONS and JANE EDWARDS. She died December 28, 1933
Occupation: Aft. October 1899, Took over father's blacksmith business
"Yesteryear in Sussex: Fred Stier's Blacksmith Shop", by Fred H. Keller, Yesteryear in Sussex Revisited, page 35-36. Where Cain's Service Station stands today was once the center of Sussex, the "Four Corners." [Main and Maple Ave.]. Charles Cooling, an English immigrant, operated Cooling's Carriage and Wagon Shop on the southeast corner. Fred Stier took over the shop around the turn of the century, It became Stier's Blacksmith Shop. This picture was taken in 1906. Only four individuals can be identified today. Those beginning third from left; Fred Stier, Francis Stier, Roy Stier and William Smith. Stier was a good iron smith but not a businessman. He had a habit of marking work down on a blackboard with chalk. Occasionally it got erased and occasionally his wife would come down to copy all the accounts from the blackboard and they'd be gone. In a 1900 bill made out by Fred's wife the price to set one horse shoe was 20 cents and four for the bargain price of 70 cents!

    According to Fred Keller (Sussex Sun, Tues. Oct 10, 1978, p20), the railroad commissioned Guy Peterson of Madison to drill the well. After going down 500 ft he lost his drill bit. He engaged Fred Stier, a local blacksmith, a make a contraption to retrieve the bit, but weeks of trying different ploys nothing was successful. Finally a decision was made to dig a new well and abandon the 500 ft hole. The new well went down 800 ft to a water source, and took over one year to complete.

April 4, 1878 - Our lively, talkative Charlie Newbecker, the blacksmith and Postmaster, is crowed with business. page 2. (Editor's note: Charlie Newbecker, who recently moved into town (Waukesha) from Duplainville and began a blacksmith business. May 14, 1885)


Andrew Prendergast/Pendergast, 39, Blacksmith, Ireland

William Wilkins (boards with Robert Leadley family, his wife ? Elizabeth, age 36,  is their house keeper, and she suffers from some disease), 27, Blacksmith, England

Thomas Campbell, 50, Blacksmith, Scotland

Donald Campbell, 21, Blacksmith, Wisconsin

Walter Davison, 23, Blacksmith (works for Campbells), Wisconsin

Charles Cooling, 62, Blacksmith, England

Willie S. Cooling, 22, Blacksmith, Wisconsin

    The book Richfield Remembers The Past identifies Colgate was established in 1886. Initially the community had the usual compliment of businesses: small hotel, general store, four saloons, a tin shop, a blacksmith shop, a cheese factory, with a church and school nearby. The cheese factory went out of business in 1914. In 1916 the community was said to possess a population of 50.
    The next post office started was in Sussex with the first settler here, Richard Cooling, a blacksmith and general store owner being the first postmaster. Jan. 6, 1851
ii. ANDREW PENDERGAST, b. Abt. 1840, Ireland.
Occupation: 1880, Blacksmith, town of Lisbon, Waukesha, Wisconsin
    By the 1890's, local business directories listed Charles Brooks, Donald Campbell, Frank C. Peterson, Mike Cooling and Fred Stier as blacksmiths. Source: Business History in Sussex - Lisbon, Blacksmiths, by Fred H. Keller, Sussex Area Chamber of Commerce, 2005, page 8 

    Waukesha Freeman, July 10, 1890 -Mr. Chas. Brooks and family, of England, arrived here on the evening of the fifth. Mr. Brooks comes to take charge of the blacksmith shop formerly occupied by W. L. Cooling.

    Waukesha Freeman, November 27, 1890 - Merton: Mr. [William] Campbell has rented his blacksmith shop to John Madison and is going to move his family to town.

    February 12, 1891 - Mr. Campbell is coming back [to Merton] to resume his duties in the blacksmith shop the first of March. Everyone will be pleased to have him back again.

    Merton - Mr. Winkler of North Lake has purchased the building from Otto Otterson, used by him for a blacksmith shop, and will remodel it into a creamery. Waukesha Freeman, November 2, 1899

1900 Census

M. W. Sullivan, Sept 1848, 51, Michigan, Blacksmith

Fredrick Stier, Oct 1874, 25, Germany, e 1882, Blacksmith

Donald Campbell, June 1859, 40, Wisconsin, Blacksmith

William Wilkins, Oct 1854, 45, England, e 1861, Blacksmith

1910 Census
Stin Fredrick, age 34, Germany, emigrated 1882/92 (This was probably Fredrick Stier)

Donald Campbell, 50, b. Wisconsin

Charles Dieffenbach, age 25, b. Wisconsin

    John Magnusson passed away on New Year's morning. Although he had not been in good health for some time, death came unexpectantly. He was born in Sweden in 1876. As a young man he worked as blacksmith apprentice for three years, then served in the (Swedish) army for two years. After this he came to America, returning to his native land in 1908. In 1910, he came back to America, bringing with him a wife, who with five children survive him. The children are Sven, Margaret, Helen, Ingrid and Arthur. The deceased has been a successful blacksmith in this village for many years, until recently, when ill health has often kept him from his shop. Funeral services were held on Sunday afternoon from the M. E. Church of which he was a member. The Rev. Buxton officiated. Interment was in Rose Hill cemetery. Waukesha Freeman, Wednesday, January 6, 1937

    Yet by 1918 the blacksmith was on its way out, as only two were listed for the area - John Magnusson in Templeton, and John Ellsworth in Sussex (Note: Waukesha Freeman, December 18, 1930, lists John as a village of Merton County Supervisor). The last blacksmith was a Russian immigrant, Roman Kanawick (note correct spelling below). Source: Business History in Sussex - Lisbon, Blacksmiths, by Fred H. Keller, Sussex Area Chamber of Commerce, 2005, page 8 

Editor's Note: Name: Roman Kanewic SSN: 398-32-5078 Last Residence: 53089 Sussex, Waukesha, Wisconsin, United States of America Born: 25 Mar 1885 Died: Nov 1971 State (Year) SSN issued: Wisconsin

Instead of a blacksmith, as was his father, Rory Stier, son of Fred Stier, age 17, auto mechanic

1920 Census (taken by Geo Wileden is separated into two enumeration districts 173 sections 1 - 18 and 174 sections 19 - 36.)

William Bluelmason ?, blacksmith

John Magnusson

1930 Census (Town of Lisbon enumeration district 14 excluding the village of Sussex)

Walter Smith, age 27, blacksmith at a motor works

John Magnusson, blacksmith, general works

    Albert Smithy of Milwaukee has purchased the blacksmith shop and tools from Mrs. John Magnussen and has taken possession. He will move his family to this village as soon as he can find a vacant house. Waukesha Freeman, December 8, 1937, page 2 of 10.

    Charles Krueger and family are moving to Kewaskum to make their home. They had been living in the former Young house for the past year. Mr. Krueger operated the Magnussen Blacksmith shop for some time. Waukesha Freeman, March 30, 1938, page 12 of 16.

For Sale - Real Estate

Blacksmith Shop: $4,000 including tools and equipment. J. Boltz, Merton, Wis. Phone 21-W. Waukesha Freeman, July 4, 1945



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