Museum logo

Archive Record

  • Email This Page
  • Send Feedback
Creator Cottage Grove Post Office
Title Cottage Grove Post Office records
Dates of Creation 1887-1968.
Physical Description 2 full size archives boxes
Language of Material English
Scope & Content The Cottage Grove Post Office Records consists of accounting records for the Vilas Post Office, 1887-1895, and Cottage Grove Post Office, 1887-1930; lists of rural free delivery box holders and names of family members served by the Cottage Grove Post Office, 1908-1961; records of the number of pieces of mail delivered and collected by rural delivery carriers, 1908; and miscellaneous loose notes, correspondence, and memoranda, including a program for the dedication of the Cottage Grove Post Office, August 18, 1968.

An inventory exists for this collection. Online users please see Inventory below. In-house users please click on the Custom button at the right to go to the Inventory field.

Admin/Biographical History Prior to 1881 there were four country post offices in Cottage Grove Township (Dane County, Wisconsin)--Nora, Emersons Corners, Hope, and Vilas. Around 1881 they were consolidated into the Cottage Grove Post Office, located in the store owned by Julius F. Neefe across the street from the Presbyterian Church. The railroad was not completed until 1882 so the mail was transferred to and from Vilas by Miss Selma Shavets where it was picked up by the stage coach. Julius F. Neefe served as postmaster until 1895. At this time the post office was moved south of the railroad tracks to the home of Robert B. Gibbons at what is now (1968) 315 South Main Street, with R.B. Gibbons as postmaster. The next location of the post office was the building that stood where John's TV Shop is now located. This building was later moved across the street and is now the locker plant.

In 1902 the post office was moved to a small one-room building just north of the present TV shop. An addition was later added to this building and in 1950 the post office moved to this two-room addition where it remained until July 1, 1968 when it was moved to a new building at 119 S. Main Street and became a Second Class Post Office.

Postmasters who have served this community are:
Julius F. Neefe
Robert B. Gibbons
Mrs. Ruth Graves
James H. Clark
Mrs. Shirley Harrison Hanson
Mrs. Edna Reynolds
Chester G. Hoel, the present acting postmaster

Rural Free Delivery started here in 1902 with three carriers using horse drawn vehicles to service routes from 25 to 27 miles long. In 1916 only two carriers were employed with 32-mile routes, still having to use horses about seven months of the year. In 1954 these two routes were combined into one route. This route is now 79 miles long, serving 2221 patrons in 462 families.

Carriers who have served are:
James H. Clark
Emmet Kretlow
Homer Percival
Walter Hawley
Bert Brown
Otto Bergum
Ed Warner
Thomas Reynolds
George Uphoff
Herman Swenson
Jesse Uphoff
William Sommers
Clayton Johnson
Theron Uphoff, the present carrier

*This history was prepared by Jesse R. Uphoff, Cottage Grove, Wis., August 18, 1968.

Archival History Gift of Jesse R. Uphoff, October 10, 1968. Accession number M1968.003.
Subjects Postal service
Places1 Cottage Grove (Wis.)
Places2 Vilas (Dane County, Wis.)
Object Name Records
Call Number ARM 68-02
Catalog ID Number M1968.003.0001
Collection Inventory The following 2-page inventory to the Cottage Grove Post Office Records is included primarily for searching purposes. A more readable version is available the the Dane County Historical Society's records center. Please contact the DCHS for more information.

Contents List

Box 1Accounting Records (8 volumes)
For stamps and other postal services sold, including records in some years of box rentals, names of renters, and carriers' salaries.

Vilas Post Office
v. 1: 1887-1892
v. 2: 1892-1895

Cottage Grove Post Office
v. 3: 1887-1892
v. 4: 1892-1895
v. 5: 1895-1898
v. 6: 1914-1916
v. 7: 1916-1919
v. 8: 1927-1930

Box 2Record of Box Holders (9 volumes)
Alphabetical list by family name of rural route box holders showing names of family members receiving mail, and the box and rural route number.

v. 1: 1908
v. 2: 1909
v. 3: 1916
v. 4: 1919
v. 5: 1945
v. 6: 1947
v. 7: 1950
v. 8: 1950
v. 9: 1955-1961

Box 2Record of Mail Delivered and Collected, 1908 (1 volume)
Daily record of the number of pieces of mail delivered and collected by rural delivery carriers, and carriers' trip reports.

Box 2Loose Papers (1 folder)
Miscellaneous loose notes, letters, memoranda, and other documents, including a program for the dedication of the Cottage Grove Post Office,