Rock County, Wisconsin

History of Spring Valley Township

Site Coordinator: Lori Niemuth

From: Wisconsin Gazetteer

by John Warren Hunt

©1853 Beriah Brown, Printer, Madison

p. 210

Courtesy of Lori

SPRING VALLEY, Town, in county of Rock, being town 2 N., of range 10 E.;
centrally located, 15 miles southwest from Janesville. Population in 1850 was 766. It has 7 school districts.

From: A New Complete Gazetteer of the United States

by Thomas Baldwin and J. Thomas, M.D.

©1854 Lippincott, Grambo & Co. , Philadelphia

p. 1106

Courtesy of Kathy Lenerz

SPRING VALLEY, a post-township in the S. W. part of Rock co., Wisconsin. Pop., 766.

From: Combination Atlas Map of Rock County, Wisconsin

©1873 Everts, Baskin & Stewart, Chicago, Ill.

p. 72

Courtesy of Lori

Mr. John CRALL was the first settler in this township, and built the first log cabin,
which still stands on the farm now owned by J. W. SPENCER; Mr. Robert TAYLOR is said to have been the second settler, and still resides in the town. There is but very little prairie, the surface is gently undulating, and covered with a scattering growth of large burr-oaks, with more or less hickory, and altogether a very good agricultural town, well watered, well wooded, a good productive soil, with a reasonable portion of good natural meadow for cutting hay, making this town a very desirable location for a farmer who wishes the convenience of a farm rather than to have an extensive one. The Milwaukee and St. Paul Railroad passes through the town. There is a large settlement of Norwegians in the town, mostly an enterprising class of farmers.

From: The Portrait and Biographical Album of Rock County, Wisconsin


p. 1022

Courtesy of Carol

Spring Valley lies in the southwest portion of the county, its western boundary
separating it from Green. It was organized by act of the Legislature, approved Feb. 2, 1846. Its territory includes township No. 2 north, of range No. 10 east. The first town meeting was held at the house of Nicholas E. PHELPS. John CALL was the first settler. Among those who soon after made claims were James KIRKPATRICK, Erastus C. SMITH, Robert TAYLOR, Roderick M. SMITH, James BRADSHAW, Alermin SPRAGUE, Amos REMINGTON, Allen HURLBUT, S. G. MILLS and Solomon ROSE.
Orfordville is an outgrowth of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad, upon
the line of which it is situated, the town of Spring Valley, seventy-four miles southwest of Milwaukee, and fourteen miles southwest of Janesville. It was first settled in 1850 by Isaac WRIGHT, who located on a farm south of the railroad; but it was not until 1857, when the railroad was completed to that point, that it began to grow. The village was laid out and named by J. T. DODGE, a surveyor of Janesville, in 1855, and included about sixty acres, part of which was re-devoted to farming when it became evident the village would not cover it. The first merchant was Edwin HARRINGTON, who began business about 1855. A year later David HARRIS and Daniel MOW built a store, which was occupied by one GREENLEAF. About twelve months after the opening of this second store a third - a grocery and liquor store - was established by THOMPSON and DIAMOND. The first birth was that of "Patsey" COLERAN, in 1857; the first marriage that of Edward WRIGHT and Edith CLARK, in 1856; the first death that of Mrs. David HARRIS, in 1859. The first school was taught in 1846 by Clara SPRAGUE, in what was afterward the residence of Isaac WRIGHT. A second school house was built in 1848, which gave place to the present one in 1862. The hotel was opened by S. A. THOMPSON in 1587. The village contains Baptist, Lutheran, and Methodist Churches, and ships livestock and grain. Population, 300.

©2002-2004 ALHN-Rock Co., WI

Site Coordinator: Lori Niemuth