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Town of Polar, Langlade County, Wisconsin

polar townhall
Polar Town Hall & Antigo Fire Dept. Station 2
W6979 State Highway 64

schuman school

Polar District No. 1, (Schuman)
Published in Dessureau's 1922 "History of Langlade County..."

The Schuman school district is located in the southern part of Polar township. The land was taken up by homesteaders in 1885, 1886, 1887, 1888 and later. Julius Schuman, William Kieper, Charles Rabe, August Kieper, Charles Behm, W.W. Wheeler, and the Pickel family, were among the first settlers.

The first school was located on section 18 in 1887. It was a log structure. This school was used until 1902 when a frame building was erected by William Rusch.

Edward Nordman, Hattie Reader, Mr. Conan and Anna Tibbets, Frank Ringsmith, C. Koenig and Mrs. Rine were early teachers. Carlyn McCarthy was the 1922-23 teacher.

The Franklin and Schuman districts were once one district. The 1921-22 school officials were: Wm. Schuman, Clerk; Ed Kolpack, Director and Henry Parsons, Treasurer.

Much of the district is yet uninhabitated.

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highland school

Polar District No. 2 (Highland)
Published in the Daily Journal, July 28, 1921
Published in the Farmers Journal, August 2, 1921
By Elmer Fischer

The Highland School District was organized in the year 1881. It was named Highland School because it is situated in the highlands. The first school building was a log hut. It stood half a mile from where the present building now stands.

Later on a frame building was constructed. It was built almost one-fourth of a mile from the one we now have. It was a long narrow building with windows on both sides and was painted white. Later an addition was made to make it larger. Several years ago they stopped using that building and built the one we now have. The frame building is being used as a house at the present time. Mr. and Mrs. William Henry and family are residing in it.

We now have a large white brick building. It has a large playground and also a large basement in which the children can play in case of bad weather.

The first church in this district was made of logs. It was a Lutheran Evangelical church. A large white frame building now stands on the same place. It has, however, been changed to a Congregational church. Most of the time they had to get ministers from Antigo to conduct services. They had a regular minister only a short time. During the summer, sometimes, they could get a student to come and stay with them all summer. But at the present time they are expecting a regular minister again. During the past the services were usually in the afternoon so as to make it possible for the minister to hold services in his own church in the morning.

There has been no large sawmill within the district. Many years ago there was a small one all made of logs. It was on the south corner of Ernest Gruenberg's land. It was in existence about one years.

The following members have served as school clerks since the school began: Charles Lade, 17 years; J.M. Fisher, Otto Haferman, 6 years; Henry Lade. These have been directors: Herman Ebert, Bern Dudley, Henry Brandt, Sidney Fisher, Henry Duesener, Edwahi Ensle. The following have been treasurers: Carl Soman, Sr., Joe Brandt, Sr., Herman Fisher.

The only pupil that attended school in this district and became a pupil of note was Miss Jennie Lade. She has for several years been a business teacher in High School.

The following are the names of the teachers who have taught school here: Louise Romise, Ed Nordman, Florence Babcock, Miss Reader, $30 a month for one year; Miss Besancon, $35 a month for 1 year; Miss Bolle, Miss Carter, Miss Kelly, Miss Netzel, #30 a month for 2 years; Miss Bishop, $30 a month for one year; Mr Conners, $30 a month for one year; Frank Vosberg, Pearl Drew, Nellie Kitt, Miss Hirt, %35 a month for one year; J.W. Schooley, $45 a month for two years; Miss Cook, $40 a month for one year; Miss Swanson, one year; Miss Edna Brakemeyer, $40 a month for three years; Emma Kupps, $30 a month for one year; Mary Wurzer, $30 a month for one year; Mary Wurzer, $30 a month for one year; May Larzelere, $30 a month for one year; Miss Jensen, $30 a month for one year, Mabel Lieth, $40 a month for one year; Lillie Winter, three years; Jean McCarthy, one year; Clara Winter, one year.

Polar District No. 2, (Highland)
Published in Dessureau's 1922 "History of Langlade County..."

Dessureau did not have a history for the Highland District in his book.

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franklin school

Polar District No. 3 (Franklin)
Published in the Daily Journal June 8, 1921
By Julia Utnehmer

The first settler of this district was William Schmuhl, Jr. He came to the town of Polar from New London in 1877, with twenty-seven other men. They followed the road through the Indian reservation. This was the only trail from New London to the town of Polar at that time. They came in four wagons, each drawn by four horses.

William Schmuhl stayed and took up a homestead here. He was the first man in this district and also in the town of Polar. The rest of the men went back to New London. In 1878 two of them came back. They were Fred Rabe and Fred Demlow.

To get their food and clothing they had to drive to Shawano or walk to New London and carry the supplies on their backs.

Settlers who came later were William Malliet, William Flemming, Herman Schmeisser, E.P. Bridgeman, Charles Parsons, Sr., Ernest Demlow, James Kennedy, Anton Nonnemacher, Martin Robrecht, M.D. Besse, William Bottrell, Joseph Wilson, August Hintz, Ernest Kieper, Charles Schumann and J.W. Parsons.

First School Building
In 1881 a school district was organized and the people decided to build a school house. The land was leased from E.P. Bridgeman. A log building was put up. It was sixteen feet wide and eighteen feet long. It had a slant roof split through the center. The rafters could be seen from the inside as it had not ceiling. It had two half windows and a door. The seats and teacher's desk were home made affairs. It took only a short time to complete this building.

After the school house was finished M.D. Besse and E.P. Bridgeman went to the southern part of the state to secure a teacher. Her name was Alice Boor.

The school was run by the township system. The officers were William Schmuhl, treasurer; William Malliet, director; and M.D. Besse, Clerk.

In 1883 the population of the district had increased so that there wasn't room enough in the old building for all the children.

A new school house had to be erected. This was a frame building twenty feet wide and thirty feet long. It was not plastered but was finished with matched ceiling. There were three windows on either side. It had a boys' and girls' hall, but they were taken out later to make room for more children. There were double seats for the children and a table and chair for the teacher. This building was heated with a box heater. It was a great improvement over the old building.

First Road
The first road that was built lay east and west between sections thirty and thirty-one, twenty-nine and thirty-two, twenty-eight and thirty-three. The next east and west roads lay on the south side of sections thirty-two and thirty-three. The first north and south road lay between sections thirty-one and thirty-two.

Church Erected
In 1885 a Lutheran church was built in the northwest corner of the northwest quarter of section thirty-three. The first minister was the Rev. Mr. Stubenfal. The others were the Rev. Messrs. Snieder, Michkalus, Dachsetime, Ebert and C.D. Griese, the present minister.

Cheese Factory Built
In 1901 a cheese factory was built in the southwest corner of section twenty-nine, one-eight of a mile east of the present site.

It was owned by Herman Krueger. In 1907 he moved it to the northeast corner of Herman Schmeisser's land. In 1912 he sold it to J.C. Holmes. After using this building one year, he took it down and built a new and better building. He also built himself a house and made his home there. J.O. Hartman now owns the factory.

Herman Krueger's saloon, which was on the southwest corner of the southwest quarter of section thirty, was changed into a store in 1916. He still runs the store.

Sawmill Built
In 1915 Herman Krueger built a mill just east of the school house. The farmers of this vicinity used to haul logs there to have them sawed into lumber. In 1920 he moved the mill up to Pearson and is running it there.

In the fall of 1915, the school house was condemned. Many meetings were held to decide what to do. Plans for a new building was made. Mr. Dallman of Antigo got the contract and the work was begun in June 1916, and finished in October. This building is thirty-eight feet long and thirty-five feet wide. It faces the west. There are seven large windows on the east and six small ones on the north. This building is furnished with twenty-eight single stationary seats, twenty-eight single adjustable seats, a new teacher's desk, a sectional bookcase, an organ, a Webster dictionary, one hundred ninety-five square feet of blackboard and a water fountain. This building is heated by a furnace. The building cost about $4,400.

A name was chose at one of the meetings. The name is the "Franklin School."

A dedication program was given the 13th of February 1917. The speakers were W.E. Switzer, J.W. Parsons, A.M. Arveson and D.A. Mader.

School Board Officers
The following are the officers who served on school board: William Schmuhl, Jr., treasurer; William Mallet, director and M.D. Besse, clerk in years 1881 to 1886; William Schmuhl, Jr., treasurer, William Malliet, clerk and Herman Schmeisser, director in 1886 to 1887; William Schumhl, treasurer, William Malliet, clerk and Ernest Kieper, director, in 1888 and 1889; William Schmuhl, treasurer, M.D. Besse, clerk and Ernest Kieper, director in years 1890 to 1897; William Schumhl, treasurer, William Malliet, clerk, and Ernest Kieper, director, in 1888 and 1889; William Schmuhl, treasurer, M.D. Besse, clerk and August Hintz, director in years 1898 to 1900; William Schmuhl, treasurer; M.D. Besse, clerk and Ernest Kieper, director in years 1900 to 1904; William Schmuhl, treasurer, Edward Utnehmer, clerk, and Ernest Kieper, director, in years 1905 to 1909; William Schmuhl, treasurer, D.A. Mader, clerk, and Ernest Kieper, director in 1910; William Schmuhl, treasurer, D.A. Mader, clerk and Otto Utnehmer, director, in 1911 to 1917; and Melvin Besse, treasurer in 1917 and J.C. Holmes in 1918, D.A. Mader clerk in 1917 and 1918, and Otto Uthehmer, director in years 1917 to 1920. The present school officers are Herman Parsons, treasurer, Martin Parsons, clerk, and Otto Utnehmer, director.

Old Buildings Left
The only buildings left in this district that were built by the first settlers are William Schmuhl's chicken coop and William Flemming's old log house.

The present population of this district is about one hundred eighty.

There are forty-one families in this district, and sixty-six children of school age, of which thirty-nine attend school.

The average cost of running this school is $1,200 a years.

Teachers in District
The following are the teachers who have taught in this district: Alice Root, 1881 and 1882; Miss Bliss, 1883 and 1884; Mrs. C.M. Shuefelt, 1885 and 1886; Russel Wheeler, 1887; Miss Anna Gilray, 1888; Frank Ringsmith, 1889; Henry Findeison, 1890; Anna Parmeter, 1890; Mary Cadigan, 1891; Nellie Kellogg, 1891; Miss J. Quinlan, 1892; W.K. Smith, 1892; A.K. Gleason, 1893; M. Kavanaugh, 1893; John McHale, Jr., 1894; Nellie Palmiter, 1895; Mattie Bradnock, 1896; M.P. Morrison, 1897; Pearl Drew, 1897 and 1898; Marie Locks, 1899; Mary McQuire, 1900; Ruth Graves, 1901; Nellie Tobey, 1902; Sarah Ano 1903 and 1904; Elizabeth Byrnes, 1905 and 1906; Theodosia Goodwin, 1907; Elizabeth Byrnes, 1908; Agnes Brakemeyer, 1909; Lottie Stoker, 1910; Leonora Theon, 1911, Martha Johnson, 1911; Margaret Byrnes, 1912; Agnes Brakemeyer, 1913; May Guenthner, 1916 and 1917; Ursula Puth, 1918; Martha Wirth 1919, and Margaret Johnson, the present teacher.

Those of this district who have achieved distinction are J.W. Parsons, who is judge of Probate Court of Langlade County, and Martha Johnson, County Superintendent-elect of Oneida County.

With such a modern, well equipped school room, with a school board who work for the interest of the school and with the best County Superintendent and Supervisory teacher in the state we expect to make the Franklin School in District No. III, Polar, the best in the state.

Polar District No. 3, (Franklin)
Published in Dessureau's 1922 "History of Langlade County..."

This is one of the oldest districts in Langlade County, being settled in 1877 by William Schmul, Jr. He was an immigrant from New London, Waupaca county, and with him came a colony of twenty-eight, all of whom moved elsewhere. Among this first group was Fred Demlow and Fred Rabe, who, in 1878 returned to the Franklin district. These hardy folk were followed by other homesteaders, including William Flemming, Sr., Valentine Weimer, William Malliet, William Schumul, Sr., Herman Schmeisser, Sr., E.P. Bridgeman, Charles Parson, Sr., Ernest Demlow, James Kennedy, Anton Nonenmacher, Martin Robrecht, M.D. Besse, Joseph Wilson, J.W. Parsons, August Hintz, Ernest Keiper, Charles Schuman, William Bottrell and August Hintz.

The thrifty pioneers of this district were not long in clearing the wilderness and erecting comfortable home for their families. Roads were few, however, nothing but crooked, winding trails existing. Early roads were constructed east and west on the section line of sections 30 and 31 and also sections 29 and 32, 28 and 33. Another pioneer road was constructed on the section line between sections 31 and 32 running north and another on the south line of sections 31 and 32 running east and west.

Four years after the first settler came into Franklin district the first school house was erected on land leased from E.P. Bridgeman. It was a quaint structure 16x18 feet and entirely constructed of logs. All the benches, desks and other furniture were home made. Alice Root, a southern Wisconsin lady, was the first teacher. The Polar schools were then under the township system. Elfrieda Pautz was the 1922-23 term teacher.

Increased population made a new school necessary and in 1883 a larger, more pretentious frame school house was erected. This school was operated under the township system until 1885. The district was organized that year with William Schmuhl, Jr., William Malliet and Herman Schmiesser, Sr., as Treasurer, Clerk and Director respectively. Thus they were the first district school officers.

The frame school was condemned in 1915 and the following June, C.F. Dallman, who was awarded the contract, began the construction of the present brick school. It was completed in October, 1916. Appropriate dedicatory services were conducted in which Judge J.W. Parsons, W.E. Switzer, A.M. Arveson, and D.A. Mader participated. This was January 13, 1917.

The 1922-23 school officers were: R. Kieper, Director; H. Parsons, Treasurer, and Martin H. Parsons as Clerk.

A Lutheran church is located on the NW corner of the NW corner of section 33. It was erected in 1885. The following have been the Pastors: Rev. Stubenfal, Rev. Snider, Rev. Michalus, Rev. Dachstine, Rev. Ebert and Rev. C.D. Griese.

The district has rapidly forged to the fore as a dairying and agricultural center with the dying out of the lumber and logging industry. A cheese factory was erected in 1901 by Herman Krueger. It was moved to section 31 in 1907. Krueger sold it in 1912 to J.C. Holmes. In 1913 the factory was re-built. John Haese purchased the plant in 1918.

Robert Krueger operated a store in 1916 in the old Herman Krueger saloon building. In 1918 Herman Krueger took it over. Mr. Krueger also has a saw mill on section 31. He built it in 1913.

The old log house of William Flemming is the last of the early land marks in this district. Many of the pioneer settlers are still living, however.

Franklin district was named after Benjamin Franklin, the eminent American statesman, scientist, publisher and writer.

(Webmaster's note: Benjamin Franklin is the webmaster's first cousin, nine generations removed)

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polar school 1
First school building
polar school 2
Second school building

Polar District No. 4 (Polar)
Published in the Daily Journal, May 12, 1921
Published in the Farmers Journal, May 17, 1921
By Leila Drew

Polar is located in the south central part of Langlade County. The townships bounding it on the south are Norwood; on the west, Antigo; on the north, Price; and on the east Evergreen. The village of Polar is nine miles north and east of the city of Antigo on the State Trunk Highway number sixty-four.

Langlade County got its name from the first white settler of Wisconsin, Charles Langlade. Langlade County is located in the north central part of Wisconsin. On the north it is bounded by Forest and Oneida Counties; on the east by Oconto County, on the south by Shawano and Marathon counties, and on the west by Lincoln County. Langlade County contains eight hundred and seventy-six square miles or twenty-four and one-third townships. It is a good agricultural county and potatoes is an important crop. The county seat is Antigo. The old Military road runs through the northeast corner of Langlade County. The first house is Antigo was built of logs and now stands on the library campus.

Before a white person set foot on this land the Indians roamed through here. Many strange stones and arrow heads which the Indians used were found. The first settler used Indian trails. This fact proves that Indians were the first inhabitants of this vast forest.

Nothing but dense forest met the eyes of the first home-seeking white settler. Each family had a gun, one or more. They were the muzzle loader and flint lock. By muzzle loader we mean they were loaded in this way; Grandfather took down his powder horn, poured a little powder into a measure and poured it into the gun through the muzzle. Then he put in a wad of paper. It was all packed down good with a ramrod. Next he put a cap on tube under the hammer. Then woe be to any deer, partridge or porcupine that crossed grandfather's trail. Of the numerous lakes around here Mullers Lake is the largest.

Now we will turn over attention to the settlement of our District.

The first white settler was Mr. Moritz Muller. Mr. Muller with his wife, children and father-in-law, Mr. Rilsner, came to Polar in 1878. He came from Shawano and settled on the north shore of Mullers Lake, a name afterwards given it.

A year or so before this, while Mr. Muller was traveling through here, he staked out a claim, got a land grant from the government, erected his homestead shanty, which was built of longs with a scoop roof and punchin floor. A scoop roof is made of logs split in two and hollowed out like a trough. Then they were put on two with the trough side up and one laid over them to cover the crack in this fashion. A punchin is made of split logs or poles hewed on one side to make it smooth and flat.

Mr. Muller lived in this home a couple of years and then he cut logs for a larger and better home. For this home he went to Shawano for lumber for floors, windows, and doors. The trip was made with a team of oxen and required several days. A good deal of the way he had to cut his own roads until he got out to Langlade where he forded the Wolf River and struck the Military Road. This new home was erected right in front of Mr. Will Rusch's pump house. With new settlers coming in Mr. Muller recognized the need of a store and post office. He built a little log building just west of his new home, put in a stock of staple groceries such as tea, coffee, soap, sugar, syrup, flour, and salt pork, and was appointed first postmaster of the town of Polar. The post office was known as Mullers Lake. These buildings have long since been torn away and the beautiful new modern home of Mr. William Rusch now stands there.

Now we will turn our attention to Mrs. Muller, a kind, gentle, motherly woman who was always ready to extend the hand of welcome to all who came her way. Mrs. Muller was often called the "Flower Mother" by her many friends for she dearly loved flowers. As the land sloped to the lake Mrs. Muller built terraces to plant her flowers on. She had flower terraces from the house almost to the water's edge. Mrs. Muller died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Ed Nordman early in February 1920.

Stories of Pioneers.
Following are the stories of a few of the pioneer settlers:

Henry Strause who sold to Fred Simmons the place now known as John Hartmau's of which the school ground is a part.

Chris Brandt who lived on a place now known as Sheblosky's farm.

Ernest Radditz from near Oshkosh cleared the farm now owned by Leonard Borneman, on which the oldest house in the district now stands. It was built about 1881.

John and James Drew of Berlin located on the Fred Wienschke and Alfred Johnson farms.

John Parsons located on the farm now owned by Henry Boreman and Robert Sprang cleared the place now owned by Fred Groth.

John Drew of Berlin, Wisconsin, drove here with a horse team in 1881. They camped beside the road when night overtook them with the sky for a tent. If it rained they slept under the wagon. When they got here they homesteaded the property now belonging to Fred Wienschke. This place is a mile and three-quarters from where the village of Polar now stands. They were accompanied by Mr. Fred Simmons, Mr. Drew's brother-in-law.

Mr. James Drew and son, David of Berlin moved to Polar in the spring of 1882. They stopped to help clear an acre of ground for the court house in Antigo. They came on to Polar through the vast wilderness. They were always on the alert for wild animals as there were many in those days. They reached Polar late that night and stayed with Mr. Drew's brother, John that night.

The next day they went to look at some land which John Drew had picked out for them. It being satisfactory, they began to make improvements. They bought the place for $200 and built a log house with a scoop roof.

They began to clear the land and planted a crop of potatoes and rutabagas. In the fall they returned to Berlin and brought back with them Mrs. Drew and three other children, Elizabeth, Edward and George.

In the year of 1887 this first home burned down. The fire originated from sparks from the stove flying into the paper on the wall. The wall was papered with newspapers. Mrs. Drew narrowly escaped being burned to death, being an invalid at the time.

Mr. Drew then built a larger and better house a little farther from the road. This house is still standing and Alfred Johnson now occupies it.

Mr. Drew and eldest son, David, would start out early in the morning for one of the trading places. The road which was made when Mr. Muller came here and was used again by John Drew, was now used. Late that night they would be done with their shopping.

The next morning they would rise early and start on their homeward journey. When they reached home their friends were waiting for them. They delivered the few things the neighbors had asked them to bring and reached home after a little more walking. Their neighbors were Radditze and John Drews.

Another family of interest was the Nels Mikkelson family. They were not real early settlers as they came here in 1888. Dan Blond wrote them telling them that Mr. Mikkelson could get work helping Mr. Webster's men build a mill. Mikkelsons came to Antigo by train. At that time there was one store and a post office in Antigo. Mr. Nels Peterson met them with a team of oxen and brought them to Polar. Mr. Mikkelson settled the other side of where the Schmidt house now stands. Their neighbors were Gees, Mullers, and Hobblecorn. The places they traded at were Antigo and Polar.

Mr. John Hose came to polar in 1887 looking for a new home. He was married on board a ship on his way over here. He landed in New York. He lived at Wrightstown a while and then Polar. Their trading places were Wausau, Antigo and polar. His neighbors were Mr. Rusch and Mr. Muller.

First Birth
The first birth in Polar recorded in the office of the County Register of Deeds, is Edward P. Bridgman, who was born July 13, 1880. The first two marriages recorded here are Frank Heins and Hannah Tibbets, who were married May 1, 1881. The first death was Nancy Kennedy, who died April 11, 1883.

The first name the village of Polar had was Muller's Lake. It had this name till Mrs. Weeks was post mistress. She named this town Sylvan Lake. The mill pond was ten called Sylvan Lake and after awhile this town again had its name changed. It was now called Muller's Lake again. Then there was a dispute about the name of this town. Some wanted it Muller's Lake and some wanted it Polar, after the first settler in Langlade County. Finally, upon vote, Polar was the name of the town.

Several times the people of Polar tried to make Polar a township. At one time Polar was a part of the township of Langlade. Langlade township once contained seven townships and the residents of Polar had to go twenty-one miles to vote. Every time the people of Polar would put the question before the voters whether or not polar should be a separate township, someone would go out and get all the lumberjacks to come in and vote it down.

One time the people of Polar thought of a plan. They went out to Langlade and stayed in the woods till almost all of the voters had left the hall and then went in a body to vote for a separate township. Thus Polar became a township.

First School
The first school was kept in Mr. Muller's house. The first teacher, Ed Broook, had two pupils, Herman and Clara Muller. School opened in 1879. M.D. Besse was school clerk. The first schoolhouse was made of logs with a scoop roof. It stood in about the same place as our school now stands. The seats in this school were benches built around the wall. The teacher's desk was home made.

The second school was a one-story frame building. It stood where the log building stood. Then it was moved down the road a way and used for a church. A new school house was then built. The religious sect bought a piece of land from Mr. Muller to put the church on. The church and grounds were bough for $250 and the foundation cost $50, making a total of $300. Mr. William Bruening now owns the house and lot.

A new school house was then built. This was also a one-story building. It had two room to it. As the population increased another story was added to it. Besides this class room upstairs there is a manual training room, kitchen, pantry, hall, cloak room, and text book library.

The names of all the teachers in the last twn years are: Miss Fischer, Miss Censkey, Miss Jersey, Miss Johnson, Miss Shreader, Mr. Muirine, Miss Marsh, Miss Blood, Mr. Seymore, Miss Angus, Mr. Elsner, Miss Donohue, Miss Krueger and Miss Quristorif taught the same room the same year, Miss Krueger resigning; Miss Wolland, Miss Dewey, Miss Stasck, Miss Jameson, Miss Culbertson and Miss Wolhaupt. Previous to this Miss Ann Grupp, Prin., and Miss Alice Donohue. They were the first teachers in the original present school. Miss Phoebie Minsart, and Catherine McCabe, Miss Dell Grant, Miss Julia Leten, Miss Blanche Killkelly, Miss Lily, Mr. Edw. Nordman, Miss Nellie Reader, Miss Jessie Darling, afterward Mrs. Herman Muller, were teachers in the old frame one-room school house and Lucy Grignon and Tillie Fergerson taught in the old log school house.

Edward Nordman
One of the teachers who taught here and has acquired distinction is Mr. Edward Nordman. He had a third grade or the poorest certificate to start teaching on. Now he is market commissioner. Mr. Seymore another one of our teachers now is superintendent of Oneida County. Mr. Elsner is principal of the Elcho school.

Our school has acquired a good deal of distinction. It has a Literary Society. It published and now publishes the first school paper in the county. It has a Lyceum Course and a Get-Together Club. The Polar Graded School held a school fair last fall.

The building in which the first church services were held belong to Mr. Webster and stood where Kellog's mill now stands. The first bridge was built across the creek by the Fred Wierschke place.

The first Sunday School here was organized by Mr. W.W. Wheeler and Miss Masterson. They organized the Sunday School in 1880. Their means of transportation was not convenient. They traveled with a gray pony and a buckboard. They carried with them a telescope organ. Miss Masterson went along to play the organ. The road was so rough that it was often too much for the pony to haul so they walked.

Oldest House
The oldest house in Polar that is still standing is on the Leonard Borneman place. Ernest Radditz built it in 1881. The next oldest house was built about three years later, or in 1884. This house is being used as a feed room by Mr. Robert Schmit. The Alfred Johnson home was built in 1887. These houses are all standing.

Among the oldest frame houses are those belonging to Will Bruening, Otto Bruening, Carl Gruenberg and Robert Hitz.

Polar of Today
Polar of today is much improved. There are three stores, two repair shops, an ice cream parlor, cheese factory, blacksmith shop, a large and beautiful park known as The Soldier and Sailors' memorial park, and a large three-room school house. Polar is located on a state graded road. There are many large and well cultivated farms and many beautiful homes and orchards in Polar. On every farm there is stock. Most of the old settlers have full blooded stock. Agriculture and mill work are the chief occupations.

The names of the people from whom we received information are: Mrs. M.H. Drew, Mr. S.E. Drew, County Register of Deeds H.A. Friedeman, Mrs. Otto Bruening, Mr. Herman Bruening, Mr. and Mrs. Nels Mikkelson, Mr. William Rusch, Mr. John Hose.

Lately information was received from Mr. Muller stating that he started the store in 1879. He said his first neighbors were Fred O. Simmons, John Hose, John Parsons, Ernest Radditz, J.M. Fischer, and Charles Lade. They traded at Antigo.

The first post office was established in 1878. They go mail once a week. Mr. Muller was the first post master.

The inhabitants of the township, children included, numbered 508 in 1895.

Polar District No. 4, (Polar)
Published in Dessureau's 1922 "History of Langlade County..."

In the year 1877, Moritz Mueller, an esteemed citizen of Shawano County, Wisconsin, came through eastern Langlade County, passed over the Indian trails in what is now Polar township and staked a homestead claim on section 16, township 31 North, Range 12 East, near a beautiful little lake, since named Mueller's Lake, in memory of his settlement near its shores. A year passed and this pioneer homesteader moved his family into the wilderness. With him came his father-in-law. Mr. Mueller erected a provision camp, which developed into the first store in polar. A post office was established and Mr. Mueller became the first postmaster.

Following the Mueller's came other pioneer homesteaders. Among them was John Fischer, John W. Parsons and family, Edward Nordman, Julius Yanke, Charles Greenburg, John Hose, Ernest Fischer, Herman Butzland, Fred Simmons, Chris Brandt, Ernest Radditz, Robert Sprang, David Montour, and James and John Drew. There were other early settlers also.

The first manufacturing institution on Polar village was erected in 1888 by the Webster Manufacturing Company of Menasha. It operated successfully under their ownership until 1898, when the T.D. Kellogg Lumber & Manufacturing Company purchased it. It has since been under their ownership and management. Thomas Kellogg, a grandson of T.D. Kellogg, who owned one of the first of Langlade County saw mills, has been manager and Superintendent of the plant since 1910. The planing mill burned in 1918. It was never rebuilt.

Polar village originally adopted the name "Mueller's Lake." It was known by this name for many years. After 1888 when the Webster manufacturing Company erected their mills at the village it was re-named Sylvan Lake by Mrs. Weeks, who was then Postmistress. The mill pond was then a large body of water and the name applied directly to it. When the Webster Company sold their interests the name reverted back to Mueller's Lake and was called such until the citizens voted to call it Polar, in honor of Hi. B. Polar, the Indian trader and prospector, after whom Polar township was named.

The first Polar school was a log building erected in 1878. Before this school was held in Moritz Mueller's residence. The first pupils were Herman and Clara Mueller and Ed. S. Brooks was the first teacher.

School was conducted for many years in the log school that once stood on the site of the present Polar school, section 15. Lucy Grignon and Tille Ferguson were teachers in the log school house. Following the log school a frame school was erected. After many years service it was moved from its original site and became a church.

Then a new frame school, one story, was erected. It was used in its original form until a second story was added on account of increased enrollment. The Polar graded school of today is well equipped. 1922-23 teachers in the Polar graded schools are: Elizabeth Kleiber, Mrs. Emil Kramer and Mrs. Ed. Hose.

The oldest building in Polar still stands. It was the residence of Ernest Radditz and was erected in 1881. A Sunday School was organized in Polar in 1880 by W.W. Wheeler and Mr. Masterson. Old frame structures still existing belong to William Bruening, Carl Gruenberg, Robert Hitz and Otto Bruening.

Robert Schmidt is the present postmaster.

Business places in Polar village are: Gus Henselman store and restaurant, the T.D. Kellogg Lumber & Manufacturing mill, T.D. Kellogg Lumber & Manufacturing Company Store, R.A. Bloedorn, soft drink parlor, the Polar General Garage, Arnold Hoppe, prop., the Walter Trakel garage, a cheese factory, now operated by Emil Kramer, a blacksmith shop run by Charles Rusch, and a shoemaker shop conducted by Ed. Schultze, and the R.P. Schmidt store.

The Polar Grange hall is located in Polar village.

A Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Park is located at Polar and a full account of this project is found in the military chapter.

The principal highway is No. 64.

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edison school

Polar District No. 5 (Edison)
Published in the Daily Journal, January 20, 1922
Published in the Farmers Journal, January 24, 1922
By Paul Jacobs

Edison School, District No. V, consists of the following: Sections three, four, five, six, seven, eight, and the west one-half of section nine , town of polar.

The first settlers in this district were Charles Soman, Sr., Joe Soman, Sr., and Frank Kuehl, Sr. They came here when the land was virgin forest, in the year 1878. They each took up a homestead of one hundred sixty acres. The next year Ed Neff, another settler, came, and he also took up a homestead.

It was much colder than it is now because of the forests. It was so cold that many settled in the hills. There were many hardships to be endured. The nearest town from which to get provisions was Wausau, a distance of thirty miles. There was only a trail through the woods to Wausau, and the only way to get provisions was to walk there and carry provisions back. The trip usually took four days. The settlers brought no stock, but wild animals furnished plenty of meat.

The only inhabitants were Indians, among which the settlers lived for three years, before the railroad came. There were many Indian camps and trails near the spot where the school house now stands. Hunting parties of Indians often passed the settlers' homes.

At last enough land was cleared to plant a small crop. The first crops consisted of rye, oats, wheat, and potatoes. The soil was fertile and the crop was good. What grain and potatoes they did not use, they sold to lumber camps.

In 1881 the Chicago and Northwestern Railway was put through to Neff's Switch. Then it was built on to Bryant. The railroad passes through sections five, eight, and nine of this district.

This school district was organized in 1880, and called district No. 5. There was no school board as it was run on the township system. Ed Neff was the only person with children old enough to go to school. When he moved away in 1882 there were no children to go, so this became part of district No. 2. In 1886 the Soman children became of school age, so this became No. 5 again.

The first school house was made of logs and was built by Charles Soman in 1880. It was situated on the southwest corner of the southwest quarter of the southwest quarter of section 5, where the school house now stands. The first teachers in the log building were Miss Mary O'Connor, now Mrs. Sam Irish, who taught one term, and Mr. Kunard, who taught two terms.

In 1886 a frame building was erected. Teachers who taught in the frame building were Anna Brennen, Lottie M. Sweeney, Genevieve Farrell, and Charles Baker.

As the population grew the demand for a larger school house grew stronger. At last in 1905 the frame building was sold to N.L. Joles for the sum of thirteen dollars. The same year August Stabe, a brick mason, was given the contract of building the brick school house that now stands. Most of the material was purchased from the Antigo Building Supply Company. Altogether the building cost the district almost two thousand dollars.

Since then there have been twelve teachers in the building. Their names and number of years of teaching are as follows: Nellie Larson 1, Nannie Congleton 1, Ida Hudson 1, Charlotte Tobey 2, Lola Wilson 1, Agnes Wolter 1, Anna Weix 1, May Napier 1, Dorothy Dorth 1, Lillie Hanson 3, Klara Lukas 1, and our present teacher, Marie Joles, 2 terms.

Three people who attended this school have since become teachers here. Their names are C. Baker, May Napier, and Marie Joles.

Polar District No. 5, (Edison)
Published in Dessureau's 1922 "History of Langlade County..."

This school district contains all of sections 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and the west half of section 9, in the northwestern part of Polar township. It was first settled by Charles Soman, Sr., who came there in 1878. Joseph Soman, Sr., and Frank Kuehl, Sr., also came in 1878. They took up government homestead lands. Edgar Neff, a pioneer mill owner in Antigo township, took up a homestead in this district in 1879. These men were the first pioneer settlers.

In 1880 a school district was organized and Charles Soman erected a small log school. The only children to attend this school were those of the Edgar Neff family. The school was then under the supervision of township school officers. The district originally was known as District No. 5, but after the Edgar Neff family moved from the community it was attached to District No. 2. In 1889 it was re-organized and a new school was erected. It was a frame school and most of the material was purchased from Davis Brothers of Bryant. Mr. Cunard was the first teacher in the frame school. Nelson K. Joles purchased the frame school for $13 in 1905, after a new one was erected of brick. August Stabe was the contractor. Nellie Larson was the first teacher in the brick school. Other teachers were: Nannie Congleton, Ida Hudson, Charlotte Tobey, Lola Wilson, Agnes Wolter, Anna Weix, May Napier, and Dorothy Borth.

The 1922-23 school officers were: T.C. Forthman, Director; J.L. Creech, Treasurer, and Mrs. Fred McCarthy, Clerk.

The district was named after Thomas Edison, distinguished inventor and world renown scientist.

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clark school

Polar District No. 7 (Clark)
Published in the Daily Journal, June 20, 1921
By Stephanea Palke

About twenty-five years ago a settler by the name of Rodo came here to live, but left shortly after moving here. Soon Clark came and stayed here quite a long time. He built a two-story house, which still stands. A railroad was being built then. Later Mr. Haney came and lived on Clark's farm.

The school district was organized in 1910. The boundaries have not been changed. Mr. Caudill was the first settler who stayed here. He came from Kentucky twenty-one years ago on the railroad passing through the district. He came alone. The house he lives in is a large two-story frame house.

The first officers of the school district were Charles Haney, Charles Green, and Henry Thornberry. Within two years Lawrence Waite was elected treasurer in place of Henry Thornberry, who was killed. After one year John Creech took the office of clerk replacing Charles Green, and has served since. In 1920 J.L. Creech was appointed treasurer in Lawrence Wait's place, the latter moving to Antigo, and Theodore Forthman was appointed director in Charles Haney's place, who moved to Idaho.

The first teacher was Cora Hungeford, who taught two years. The following taught as follows: Alice Doucette, two years; Bessie Censky, Maude Smith, Martha Weix, Alice Doucette, Mrs. Thornberry, Armella Lindsay, and Anna Klitz each of whom taught one year.

The people who left the district are Henry Oliver who went to Kentucky, Charles Haney to Idaho, Bob Lambert to Elton, Jim Oliver to Colorado, Lawrence Waite to Antigo, Charles Green to Forest County, Wisconsin, Bill Clark to New Mexico, John Waddell to Ohio, Paul Bolosito to New York, and Otto Grubner to Chicago. Mr. J.L. Creech went to Ohio, but returned later.

The people who came here gardened potatoes, usually one-half to two acres. The first children of the district went to a school three-quarters of a mile from where the school is now located. No remains of it are left but the place, and it is known by the stone. It was not in the district. There was an old house opposite the present school which was used the first year as a school house. Slate blackboards were not used, and there were no seats, but benches. Cora Hungerford was the teacher who taught there. It was owned by Mr. Logan, and it is called the Logan House.

The first child born while this school district was organized was Sam Creech. A mill was built and owned by Mr. Gust Herman of polar, but soon it was taken away. The Herman Trail was the first trail used, which is not the main road. A road was made from the western part of the district to the school house in 1918. The school is not in the central part of the district because the school had to be on a road, and there was none near the center. A new school house will soon be built, or this school moved. The enrollment is 30 pupils now.

The first marriage in the district was Robert Lambert and Lizzie Creech. The first store was owned by P. Horton, and the first election was in the Logan house.

Otto Grubner left twelve years ago, immediately after his buildings burned down.

John Caudill, one of the first settlers came here twenty-one years ago from Kentucky. He stayed here a short time, and then went back to Kentucky to get his wife and children, and came back. He is now sixty-nine years old, and is still on the farm. Recently he purchased a Ford car, which is the first car owned in this district. He is well like by everyone and is the man who gave most of the information about the district.

Polar District No. 7, (Clark)
Published in Dessureau's 1922 "History of Langlade County..."

The Clark district is located in the northern part of Polar township. The first settler was James Bodo, who came into the district, settled for a short time and then moved away. He was followed by Mr. Clark, who came into the district from Antigo, where he had prospected previously. The third settler was a Mr. Caudill, who came from Kentucky. He, like those who came before, erected a rough log shanty on section 12. He was dissatisfied, however, and would not live in the country without his family. He then returned to Kentucky, arranged for moving his family, which he did. The first frame building was erected by him. It was a two story house, in which he has since resided.

Other settlers followed and before long Clark district was fairly populated. The railroad came through the district long before the first settlers, but roads were built after an elapse of years. The old Herman trail has since become the main highway.

the first school in the district was a log school erected just across the road from the present school. Mrs. Soman was the first teacher. In 1910 a a frame school was constructed. Early teachers were: Cora Hungerford, Miss Censky, Maud Smith, Martha Weix, Alice Doucette, Mrs. Thornsberry, Anna Klitz, and others. The present teacher is Rose Singer.

The first school meeting was held in the old Logan house. The district was organized in 1910. The Logan house was used for one year as a school. Audrey Creeck, Florence Caudill and Ora Caudill attended the log school.

Mr. Caudill owned the first automobile in this district.

The 1922-23 school officers were: Maud Jacobs, Clerk; F.M. Jones, Director, and Ben H. Baker, Treasurer.

Early settlers were: James Bodo, the Clark, Mr. Caudill, George Bonner, Mr. Dyer, W.W. Clark and Veclak families.

The pioneers of Clark district were forced to undergo many hardships. However they have developed farms, erected good buildings and have provided proper facilities for the education of their children. This is a striking contrast to that day when James Bodo, the wanderer, first came into this region.

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lincoln school

Polar District No. ?, (Lincoln)
Published in Dessureau's 1922 "History of Langlade County..."

There are about twenty-two settlers in the Lincoln District of Polar township. William Peters came to that district in 1900 from Germany, settling on section 35. August Erickson came from Sweden in 1905, settling on section 26. Frank Rychlik came from Bohemia, taking up land in section 26. He came in 1908. Albert Smola came from Pennsylvania in 1908, settling on section 26, and the same year Frank Hlinsky, a Chicagoan, took up a farm on section 35. This district has one sawmill on section 35, operated by water power. Adolph Blahnik ran it for four years. The first school was held in the William Peters home. Early pupils were Cora Peters, Emma Peters, and Eric Jartzke, while Lena Wendorf was the first teacher. The present school was erected in 1912 on section 25 by C.F. Dallman at a cost of $1,400. The 1921-22 officials of this district were A. Blahnik, Clerk; Louis Peters, Treasurer, and Emil Pautz, Director. The region is rolling and in some places level. Drew Creek runs through it.

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