insurance on the Courthouse or any other county property. They
recommended the Courthouse be insured for 5 years for $15,000, equally in
Aetna, Hartford and Phoenix of Hartford, Conn., Continental of New York,
and House of New York and all policies be made concurrent. The furniture
in the Courthouse be insured for 5 years in the Phoenix of Brooklyn, N.Y.
for $1,600 and to have the county treasurer carry this out. The report was
On December 22
, the Board dealt with accounts and authorized payments
to Citizen Bank of Delavan for $11,020.70, First National Bank of Elkhorn
for $356.40, James Ara
m for $7,500, and S. Stanford for $800…all related
to the new building loans plus interest. They approved the Superintendent of
Schools to have necessary office room in the office of the Clerk of Circuit
The Board received a report of the Public Property Committee on visits to
the county property. The Poor House and farm is in good condition and
excellent order. Bricks used in the chimney were of poor quality. A
competent person needs to examine and, if necessary, make needed repairs.
The jail is in good condition for as poor a building as it is. It is neat and
clean. The jail is practically a wreck, unfit for public use. The jail lot is too
small; there is no place for a barn and necessary out buildings or no garden
spot. They recommended a committee of 3 to examine the jail, find a
suitable spot and construct a new jail. The Courthouse seems to be alright.
Some furniture needed in the offices, especially the Judges and the Clerk of
Courts offices. They recommended that the county agent insure the
Courthouse for $15,000 for a 5 year term. The privy on the Public Square
needs to be painted a neutral color outside and a lead color
inside…something that will not accept fancy penciling.
On December 23
, the Board heard a report that the condition of the Poor
House and Farm was found all in good order and recommended that the
salary of the overseer be $1,000. The resolution to insure the county
buildings was postponed.
On November 14, 1876, the Board met for their annual meeting with 20
supervisors present. A special committee on the jail reported it was too
small and was unsafe. The Public Property Committee presented a
resolution to build a new jail and sheriff’s residence. A committee of 5 was
named to be the building committee. They were to purchase a suitable site,
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not remote from the Courthouse and procure suitable plans and
specifications and proceed with its erection. They would have the power to
draw orders from the treasury and borrow money if necessary. After being
postponed, a motion was adopted to have a committee of three investigate
possible sites and costs and report at the next Board meeting. A resolution
to insure the county buildings was again rejected.
On November 16
, a resolution was presented that the County Clerk procure
furnishing for the Board room (seats for supervisors, table and chairs for the
chairman and clerk) not to exceed $200. It was rejected.
On December 19
, the D. A. received $50 in lieu of fuel and office rent.
The Public Property Committee reported no changes in the Courthouse and
county offices. The jail has not improved
it is a miserable, old, rotten,
tumble down concern utterly unfit for the purposes of a prison and
inadequate as a sheriff’s residence.
On December 20
, the Public Property Committee was ordered to obtain a
desk and furniture for the Clerk of Circuit Court not to exceed $250.
On November 13, 1877, the Board held their annual meeting with 20
supervisors present and elected J. A. Treat on the first ballot. They dealt
with accounts. A petition to increase the wolf bounty was referred to the
committee on roads. A petition to preserve fish in Booth Lake was referred
to a special committee of three. The county surveyor asked for a copy of the
field notes of the original survey of the county. Mr. Aldrich was authorized
to obtain this, not to exceed $100.
On November 14
, the Public Property Committee reported that because of
the weather they could not make a complete examination of buildings. All
they have seen so far was in good condition except for the jail, which is in
very poor condition and wholly unfit for the detention of prisoners who do
not want to stay or for the sheri
On November 15
, the committee on the jail reported a lot across from the
SW corner of the Park is for sale, the Barlow lot, for about $1,200. It does
not have easy drainage but an excellent location. A lot directly west of the
jail, known as Mrs. Lee’s lot, is available for $150, but is not as
desirable. A lot south of the jail, known as the Luke Taylor property,
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contains 2 acres, has good drainage and location
but cannot ascertain the
price because the owner is not in town. The committee recommended that if
Luke Taylor property can be bought for $600 it would be the most desirable
offer. The committee asked several other Board members to examine the
The jail building committee resolution was taken off the table and approved
but the committee appointment was delayed until December. A motion to
spend $300 to repair the jail roof was rejected.
On December 18
, the Board met with 18 supervisors present and dealt with
accounts. The room adjacent to the courtroom now used by the Judge of
Circuit Court was assigned to the District Attorney as his office, provided
the arrangement is not objected to by the Judge.
On December 19
, the Board adopted a resolution to obtain storm windows
for the treasurer’s and clerk’s
office and window back of the Judge’s desk in
the courtroom and pay for them out of the county agent’s fund.
On December 20
, they gave the building committee authority to select and
purchase the right lot for the jail. They adopted a resolution that the building
committee could use any part necessary to purchase the lot for the jail.
On November 12, 1878, they held their annual meeting with 19 supervisors
4 villages and 15 townships were represented. The Town of
Darien was not represented.
On November 13
, there were 16 supervisors present. They adopted a
resolution that the county sue and collect from the property of a patient at
the Hospital for the Insane at the cost of this county or from anyone legally
bound to support such patient and pay the money into the county treasury.
The committee on Public Property reported the new jail building was
substantial and well built. A barn was also built and a fence was in the
process of being built. A building to store fuel was needed. The old jail was
unoccupied except a section for storage. The building no longer is of use to
the county and we should dispose of it. The Board authorized the building
committee to sell the old jail and sight (sic) at the best price for the county.
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On December 18
, the Board directed the county agent not to buy any
furniture of any description for the use of the sheriff’s residence, whatever,
unless there was a statute law providing for the same. The building
committee reported that they advertised the sale of the old jail and received
six offers. They sold the property to Miss A. Bulkley for $800 cash and
have received $100 which was turned over to the county treasury. The
Board passed a resolution to give Miss A. Bulkley a good and sufficient
deed upon receipt of $700 and the county clerk would furnish an abstract of
the title at no cost.
The Board ordered payment of $6,625.84 to the First National Bank of
Elkhorn for notes drawn by the building committee. The Board adopted a
resolution that the county agent purchase a cistern pump for the pantry in the
sheriff’s residence and to put up suitable molding and hooks to hang picture
to save the walls of the building. The building committee report indicated
that the final cost of the jail was $9,904.35. The added costs were for
improvements which were made with the advice from other Board members.
There were additional costs beyond that for the contractor totaling $641.88
making the total cost $10,546.23. Another listing of related bills totaled
$525.19 and 2 bills for painting totaling $43.75. Another two bills totaling
$57.00 and the cost of the lot was $1,000.
On December 19
, the special committee on the building committee
reported that the final total cost of the jail was $12,525.73 and the report was
adopted and ordered that bills be paid. The building committee for the jail
was discharged after receipt of money for the old jail. The title was referred
to the D.A. to take the necessary action to give a clear title The Public
Property Committee inspected the Courthouse and the building known as
Register’s Office and found them in good condition and well cared for. The
Poor House and Farm all were excellent order and the farm properly cared
for. The County is fortunate to have the servic
es of “Hon. T. W. Hill and
lady to superintend the same.”
The Board held their annual meeting on November 11, 1879 with 20
On November 12
the concern for worn records in the Register’s office was
referred to the Public Property Committee. The county agent was asked to
purchase furniture for the County Board room not to exceed $350. They
also asked for the purchases for the jail and Registe
r’s office totaling $96.75.
No action was taken on a motion to remove the fence around the park and
sell it. They adopted the resolution that the Public Property Committee meet
with Elkhorn supervisors regarding the park fence and report at the next
On December 16
, a resolution was adopted that any person jailed in the
county jail and to hard labor without jail, the sheriff at his discretion can
cause that person to do labor on any streets or roads in the county or on any
county building or the County Poor Farm at the direction of the person
having charge of that building, grounds or road as long as the county will not
be charged for the labor. The sheriff has the discretion to make these
assignments. Work to be done under the supervision of the sheriff or one of
The Board met on December 17
and adopted a resolution that the county
agent purchase a new stove for the Clerk of Court and dispose of the old
stove. A special committee was assigned to investigate the fence question
and report at the next session. The county agent was ordered to purchase
bedding for 8 beds, 1 dozen shirts and 1 dozen pairs of socks for the
prisoners in jail. The Board voted a $4,500 budget for the Superintendent
for the Poor. They allowed the
Wisconsin Dairymen’s Association the use
of the court
room and Board of Supervisors’ room for their annual meeting in
January. The sheriff to be in charge of the rooms during this meeting.
The Board met on December 17
and adopted a resolution that the D.A.
shall not use an office in the Courthouse and shall not use county fuel, but
that he be allowed instead, $25/year.
On November 11, 1880, the Board voted not to replace the fence around the
Courthouse Park and to remove the fence that was there.
On December 29, 1881,
the Public Property Committee reported “the new
building, erected by the Superintendents during the past year is commodious
and a good building for the purpose intended.”
On November 12, 1884, the Board received a letter from the State Board of
Charities and Reform indicating that the Insane Asylum is inadequate for the
number of residents. The County Board appointed a committee to
investigate the cost of needed additions. The next day the committee
reported that they had examined the building and recommended the addition
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and that taxes of $5,000 be raised this year and the same next year to pay for
the work. On December 30, 1884, the committee reported that a building of
brick would be built next to the main building of sufficient size to
accommodate 50 males. Plan and specifications to be developed so the
whole sum would not exceed $12,000.
On December 28, 1885, it was reported that the new building was furnished.
On November 16, 1887, the Superintendent of the Poor asked for $1,000 for
a new barn. The request was approved on November 17, 1887. That same
day a committee was appointed to study the need for “new insane
On November 10, 1888, the committee reported the need for a building for
50 female patients and the need
to separate them from the poor residents. “It
should be built west of the present Poor House and that the present Poor
House be fixed up as a dining room for the female insane.”
On November 12, 1889, it was reported that the corridor between the Poor
use and the Asylum wasn’t originally built because it would have cost
$1,250. This was not authorized by the Board. “Now we find it is necessary
to have the corridor. The Superintendent built the corridor at a cost of $750.
A resolution to pay that amount was approved. The committee reported that
the building was complete and at a final cost of $11,567.14.
On November 13, 1890, the Public Property Committee reported that there
was a need for a brick building, 18 x 12 feet to keep milk and butter on the
On November 15, 1894, the Public Property Committee recommended a
brick building, 12 x 20 feet and 12 feet high, be built south of the privy in
the park. This would be used for a privy and a place to deposit ashes. Also,
a brick building, 24 x 30 feet, to be built at the jail to be used as a laundry
and a coal bin. The recommendation was approved.
On November 12, 1897, the Board approved $5,000 to erect a work house or
stockade at the jail.
On March 6, 1900, the Board received word that the poor and the insane
patients must be separated. A committee was appointed to look at plans to
erect a building not to exceed $15,000.
In their report to the Board on November 17, 1900, the committee on Public
Property indicated that the new Poor House was nearly completed. On
the Board approved a resolution that the idea of a County
Soldiers’ Monument on the
Courthouse grounds be submitted to the electors
on November 4, 1902. At that meeting the Board learned that the cost of the
new Poor House was $14,994.45. $15,000 had been appropriated.
On November 14, 1902, the Board approved an addition to the barn, a new
laundry building and new root cellar on the farm. $2,100 was approved for
On November 14, 1905, the Trustees of the Asylum and the Superintendent
of the Poor Farm reported that the new horse stable was completed.
On May 10, 1906, the Board approved a resolution that $7,000 be
appropriated to build a fireproof county office building for the offices of
County Judge and Register of Deeds along with earlier appropriated monies
The building committee reported on November 12, 1907 that the new county
office building was finished. It cost $41,224.43. With the appropriations
including one for furnishings of $1,000 and the sale of the old building and
furnishings, there was $26. 07 balance in their budget. On November 12
the Public Property Committee reported that a new barn was needed at the
jail. At that same meeting the Trustees of the Asylum asked for $2,500 to
build a new barn, 32 x 72 feet. Another action that day was to grant old
soldiers the use of the south west room on the second floor of the new
building until such a time it would be needed by the county. [An extensive
report about Walworth County soldiers compilation can be found in the
November 10, 1910 County Board Proceedings.]
On November 10, 1908, a special committee reported that a memorial
honoring County Soldiers would cost $800. They also wanted to compile a
history of each soldier; that compiled record would cost $1,000.
On December 28, 1910, the Board voted that use of the jury room was
granted to District Attorney Buckley when the same was not otherwise
After several resolutions to build a new jail failed, on November 17, 1911
they passed a resolution to investigate offers for the old jail and the cost for a
On September 13, 1912, the State Board of Control of Wisconsin sent a
letter to the county indicating that a recent inspection of the jail showed that
it was dangerous to the health of its occupants. If a new jail was not
constructed by October 1, 1913, the jail would be closed. On November 15,
1912, the Public Property Committee reported that they asked Van Ryan &
DeGelleke, architects, to draw up plans for reconstruction of the present jail
to meet state codes. They also recommended that the same architects draw
plans for making the vaults of the Courts and the County Clerk fireproof.
On November 13, 1913, the Board voted to build a pavilion or speakers
stand in the park as a gathering spot for the Walworth County Soldiers’ and
Sailors’ Association and appropriated
$600 for it. The next day they
rescinded that action, lowering the appropriation to $300 and asking Elkhorn
to contribute the other $300. That day they also made serious plans for a
new jail and asked the State Board of Control for an extension to allow for
building. The next month they learned that the extension was approved until
On November 10, 1914, D. W. Stanford, Superintendent of the County
Insane Asylum and Poor Farm reported that a cement block silo was built
next to the barn.
On November 9, 1915, the Board was informed that the new jail was
completed and ready for inspection. On November 12
, the Public Property
Committee reported that the cattle barns were in bad condition and asked for
$6,000 to correct the situation.
On January 10, 1916, Dr. Edward Kinney, physician at the county
institutions called attention to the need for a hospital to isolate ill residents.
The County Hospital Committee concurred with Dr. Kinney and asked that a
study be done about what other counties were doing. In his 1916 report to
the Trustees, D. W. Stanford indicated that a large amount of the work of
building the new barn was done by the men residents.
On May 10, 1917, the special committee appointed to investigate building a
county hospital reported and recommended that one be built according to the
plans of Architect W. S. Holmes of Chicago, Illinois and that it be built at
the county farm. On January 11, 1918, it was reported that the new hospital
was nearing completion.
On November 12, 1919, the Superintendent reported that a new implement
shed and a garage had been built on the county farm.
On May 18, 1926, the Board gave permission to the city of Elkhorn to erect
a band shell in the Courthouse Park until such a time that the site would be
needed by the county. On November 1, 1926, it was reported that two
brooder houses were erected at the farm.
In their report on November 1, 1927, the Hemstreets indicated that a new
hog barn was built on the farm. A new garage barn was erected across the
road from the main buildings; the old one was torn down. On November
, the Board voted to appropriate $35,000 to build an addition to the
On May 15, 1928, the Public Property Committee reported that the low bid
for the addition to the County Hospital was $46,528.00. By eliminating
plastering, finishing, heating, plumbing, terrazzo and tile work and the
elevator the price would be $38,628.00. They further recommended that the
upper floor be competed with an appropriation of $15,000 from the General
In the Superintendent’s report to the Trustees of the County Insane Asylum
for the Chronic Insane, County Home and Poor Farm it was indicated that a
new hog barn was built on the farm along with a new chicken brooder.
On November 18, 1929, the Public Property Committee reported that the
addition to the County Hospital was completed. The repairs on the old
Courthouse ran more than was appropriated.
The November 1, 1930 report of the Superintendents to the Trustees
included that a new screened in porch was attached to the east side of the
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