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Lisbon Township: First land Grants


Added January 29, 2016 by Michael R. Reilly

Found at the Waukesha County Museum by Angie Rozinski with research help from John Schoenknecht. See notes below.

"Information from the Waukesha County Museum Research Center"

"Map courtesy of  the Waukesha County Historical Society."

January 29, 2016

John Schoenknecht to:

Hi Angie,

I scanned the 1839 map for you. Bonnie and I looked into this more carefully today. This map shows the first recorded land recordings in Waukesha County. As far as we can figure out, this means that in 1839, when the land was offered for sale, (probably by a land agency or company) these were the people who purchased the land. The date is by the name of the landowner.

The dates of purchase range from 1839 - the late 1840s. We figured this means that the land company had the land until this purchase was made. We do not know who held the land before the purchases were recorded.

Now, we are not entirely sure if either Milwaukee or Waukesha County would have earlier records or maps. They may, but we just don't know. We do not have anything earlier here.

I found it interesting that the Weavers, Bonhams, etc. are the earliest recorded and that their land was along the river. I will send you a separate document that has each section indexed.

January 28, 2016

This is John Schoenknecht. I am going to confuse things more, but also hopefully straighten this out.

1. We hold an Increase Lapham map from 1835 - 36. This map does not show settlers, but it shows the route of a proposed canal from Milwaukee to the Rock River.

2. I believe you showed us part of an Increase Lapham map from about 1836 that we also located on the SHS website. This map showed some settlers on what appears to be a road. We spent some time checking this map against our 1839 land ownership map and some of the settlers listed were the same and some were not.

3. Many years ago, our Historical Society sponsored a project that created a map of each township in Waukesha County. These maps reflect the owners of the land when the OFFICIAL land sales took place in 1839. Before that, there were claims on land, but they were not “official” in that they were not officially recorded in county records.

This 1839 map will be of most use to you in your project. It is not an old map, it was made much later to reflect who purchased the land. It indicates who had already owned land before the sale and those who purchased land in 1839.

The map uses a term for the original settlers - I think they are called “Patent” owners. But the map should reflect where the Weaver family and the Bonhams, Smiths, etc. claimed their land.

The first official map that I know of (besides our later, 1839 map) that shows land ownership is the 1859 plat map, which I sent you previously.

It’s possible that there is an earlier map somewhere in Milwaukee County. However, our society has been around for more than 100 years and there have been many previous researchers and archivists and librarians who would also have had in interest in such a map and would have made sure we have a copy. There just is not such a thing that I know of… I rechecked our map collection two weeks ago and did not find anything earlier. But anything is possible. I know there are early plat maps at the Register of Deeds Office, but those were for cities and villages, not townships.

So, on Friday, we will have the notebook and map from 1839 that shows the original land ownership. We will have our Pioneer notebooks available that may help verify information. We can show you the 1836 Latham map, but it has no land ownership information. We have it scanned and can show you on a computer.

We have the 1859 plat map copied and kept in a notebook. We also have it scanned on a computer which is easier to see. I previously sent you a copy of that map.

I truly think that the 1839 original land ownership map is what will help your project the most.


John Schoenknecht

January 29, 2016 [Editor's note - the pdf document mentioned below will be added later with a link from this page]

Hi Angie,

Here is the .pdf document I created of the first recorded land purchases in Lisbon Township. This corresponds with the map I previously sent to you. This document is searchable so if you want to find a certain name, you can just search for that name. It is arranged by section number in the township.

This project was organized by the Waukesha County Historian, Edith Tallmadge. in 1947.

Our policy for helping local historical societies is not to charge, but we would ask that you give us credit for any information we gave you that you use in your display.

"Information from the Waukesha County Museum Research Center" would be good.

I know you have limited time, but it might be worth a call or visit to the Register of Deed Office at the county courthouse.

When Waukesha and Milwaukee counties separated, all of the early records were copied by the new Waukesha County. I believe that these records are still at the courthouse. There just may be a map there - it would be in a bound volume. I saw some very early plat maps of the village of Waukesha that are kept there.

I don't know if there would be similar copies of Lisbon township.

I hope this all helps you.


John Schoenknecht

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