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Fred H. Keller | Retrospect

Then and now, Christmas 1890 and 124 years later

Feb. 11, 2014

A pioneer home in Lisbon, possibly started in 1852, but maybe as late as 1860, is now the remodeled home of Mary Knapp (N88 W22936 North Lisbon Road.)

Mary Knapp (nee Pirocek) spent part of her life in western Menomonee Falls near the Town of Lisbon. On getting married, she spent time from 1972 to 1984 on Hillside Road, north of N. Lisbon Road. In the process of life, she had two daughters and then divorced her husband. Knowing the north Lisbon area, she looked for an appropriate new abode, and in 1984, she purchased the former Harvey Jeffery farmhouse on N. Lisbon road, just down a short stretch from the Wisconsin Central crossing. She came into a former Lisbon pioneer farm home with the most prominent former owners being Henry T. Jeffery and his son Harvey B. Jeffery. Harvey had taken over the farm in 1904, just after he completed an agricultural course at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He would farm his 54 acres for the next 60 years.

In the 1923 Rural Waukesha Farm Directory, Harvey had a wife Louise, two horses and 14 cows. He was also known to have pigs and chickens. Then there is the 1928 Waukesha Prairie Farmer directory entry for Harvey, which lists his wife as Edna Wildish.

Knapp had 3.7 acres with her home, that partly had been refurbished before she bought it. now she really got to work with her own elbow grease, and subcontracted out remodeling contracts of the things she couldn't do. It took 9 years, until 1995, for her to essentially complete the remodeling, but she has kept at touch ups and replacements (heating system, etc.) since then.

One significant item was the basement, built with field stone and mortar. She found the base was 36 inches through while the top still was 24 inches thick.

A property map from 1891 shows that the Jeffery farm was called "Evergreen Home." Back then, the paint job was cream colored accentuated with green trim.

In a side note, Harvey Jeffery attended the North Lisbon Methodist Church until it was torn down in 1929. His farm and home was part of a cluster of Jeffery extended family holdings near the corner of Colgate Road and North Lisbon Road. Today, all Jeffery holdings have passed on to new owners and developments.

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Weekend Happenings

Featured this week:  

Dousman FD Pancake Breakfast: 8 a.m.-12 p.m.  Oct. 11, Dousman Fire Department, 107 S. Main, Dousman. Also includes Flight for Life at 9 a.m.; room fire demonstration (live fire) at 10 a.m.; car extrication demonstration at 11 a.m.  plus balloon creations (8-10 a.m.),  bounce house.  Waukesha County Communications (9-1-1), Waukesha County Sheriff K-9, Waukesha County Mobile Command Unit, ATF vehicle.

Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser: 7 a.m. -12 p.m. Oct. 10, Oconomowoc Volunteer Fire Department, 212 Concord Road, Oconomowoc. Free will donations appreciated. Also includes fire trucks and displays, raffles, kids activities. Proceeds go toward the purchase of new emergency equipment.

Move Your Mutt for HAWS: 7 a.m. Oct. 10, Genesee Lake Road Town Park, Genesee Lake Road, Oconomowoc. Choose the 5K and bring your pet or run the 10K without your dog. There is also a one-mile walk. Raise $100 in pledges and race for free. Food and beverages available as well as vendor booths and adoptable pets from HAWS. $25 one-mile walk, $45 for 5K, 10K.


Tyke Hike: 10 a.m. Oct. 10, Lapham Peak State Park, W 329 N 846, Delafield. Please meet at the observation tower. Look for yellow ’Ice Age Trail Event’ signs. Tyke hikes are 60- to 90-minute slow-paced hikes promoting nature and family hiking in an outdoor educational setting. 


All weekend happenings