- Plymouth is situated in the southwest
quarter of the county. It was organized by act
- of Territorial Legislature, approved
March 8, 1848, to include all the township 2 north, of range
11 east, was first settled in the spring of 1841. David and Stephen
DOUGLASS and Samuel COLBY arrived with their families
from Michigan on the 31st of May, and pitched their tent near
the center of section 2, on the bank of a branch of Bass Creek.
They made use of their tent and covered wagons, of which they
had three, for a habitation, and they were enabled to build a
house for the elder DOUGLASS. Their nearest neighbors
east were Jasper P. SEARS, on Rock river, and Judge HOLMES
and family, who lived on the farm of now owned by NOGGLE.
To the west were John CRALL, Abraham FOX, John
D. HOLMES, Alanson CLAWSON, Wendel FOCKLER,
George W. ADAMS and father, with their families, some
nine miles distant. The first town meeting was held Aug. 28,
1848. The supervisors elected were Caleb LUMAN, chairman;
George AYERS and Samuel SMILEY. The number of votes
polled was seventy-one.
- Hanover, in the town of Plymouth, at
the junction of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St.
- Paul Railway and the Chicago &
Northwestern Railway, eight miles southwest of Janesville, was
first located by Joseph HOHENSHELDT, in 1844. He was followed
the next year by Mathias GUNDEL, and wife, but about that
time immigration almost ceased. The village was platted April
16, 1856, by John L. V. THOMAS and wife, proprietors.
The Milwaukee & Mississippi Railroad, as the Chicago, Milwaukee
& St. Paul road was then called, was finished so that the
first freight was received at Hanover, Sept. 1857. In 1856 a
post-office was established, with William RANNEY as postmaster.
The first birth was that of Montana HOHENSHELDT in 1845.
The first marriage was that of Simon HOHENSHELDT and Miss
FOX, in 1854. The first store was opened in 1856, by Nathan
HIGHME. A gristmill was built in the same year by S. F.
CHAPMAN and is now owned by A. BECKMAN. The school
house was erected in 1858. The village has one church, of the
German Lutheran denomination.
- Footville, on the northern border of
the town of Plymouth, on the Chicago &
- Northwestern Railway, ten miles west
of Janesville, was first settled in 1845, by Mr. E. A. FOOT,
from whom it derives its name. The locality was formerly known
as Bachelors' Grove, and for six years had the distinction of
being the terminus of the Galena & Chicago Union Railroad
(as the line was first designated) then in course of construction.
E. F. RICHARDS was the second settler, and his and Mr.
FOOT's and two other families, who came later, constituted
Footville's population until 1854, when the railroad became an
established fact. The first store was opened by Watson BEACH,
in 1853; the second in 1854, by BANCROFT & NORTHWAY.
The first born here was a daughter of E. F. RICHARDS,
who later became Mrs. N. L. MAXON. The first marriage
was that of E. A. DOUGLASS and Martha BEACH, Christmas,
1846. The first death was that of a woman at Mr. FOOT's
house. Julius GILBERT taught the first school in a log-house
belonging to Mr. FOOT in 1848. About a year later a school
house was built half a mile north of the village, in Center,
which in 1853 was removed to Footville and was occupied there
for school purposes until 1855, when the Methodist Church was
built and the school was removed to it, continuing there till
1875, when the church burned and an adequate frame school house
was built. The post-office, formerly Bachelors' Grove, was established
in 1845, with E. F. RICHARDS as postmaster. The village
contains two stores, two blacksmith-shops, a harness-shop, a
shoe-shop, a hotel and three churches. Population 300.