Category: History

Door County is rich in history, from its most prominent founding citizens to the business leaders who embraced tourism to make it the destination it is today. It’s a history of orchards, farming, and fishermen, but also of potters, artists, and writers. But more than anything, it’s a history told in the lives of the remarkable people who’ve called it home for a spell or a lifetime. Door County Pulse tells them all.

  • Shipyards Open Their Doors Sept. 11

    Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding, CenterPointe Yacht Services and the U.S. Coast Guard will open their doors for public tours this weekend – tours that were rescheduled from the first Saturday in May because of pandemic concerns. The tours benefit the Rotary Club of Sturgeon Bay and Rotary Youth Interact. “This is the one time of year when […]

  • Stepping Up to Preserve Door County’s Maritime Heritage

    story and photos by Tim Sweet Some people are destined to make a positive difference during their lifetime, and Paul Schumacher is one of those special individuals. Schumacher, 70, serves as the volunteer leader for the Friends of Plum and Pilot Islands’ (FOPPI) historic preservation committee. A retired engineer, he devotes seemingly countless hours to […]

  • Late 1800s, Early 1900s Come to Life at Noble House

    After closing the doors of Fish Creek’s Alexander Noble House ( in 2020, workers packed away 23 wedding gowns, carefully cleaned the museum and placed interesting pieces to reveal Fish Creek’s past. Now the museum is open again for the season and is displaying artifacts of Fish Creek life from the late 1800s into the […]

  • The Florian II Property: 136 Years of History

    The site that’s now the Florian II Lakeshore Supper Club in Baileys Harbor was first occupied by a stagecoach inn that Carl Hendricks built in 1885. The rooms on the second floor were heated with small, wood-burning stoves, and there was an adjacent stable for horses.  In about 1900, it was sold to Soren Hansen, […]

  • First Range Light Repairs Completed, More Planned

    The Friends of Plum and Pilot Islands (FOPPI) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have completed Phase I of repairs, rehabilitation and restoration of both of the historical range lights.  This eight-week, $235,000 project was made possible by FOPPI donors, as well as grants from the David L. and Rita E. Nelson Family Fund […]

  • Program Chronicles Door County’s Cherry Heyday

    The Egg Harbor Historical Society will present “Where Were You When the Cherries Needed to Be Picked?” on Aug. 10, 7 pm, at the Kress Pavilion, 7845 Church St in Egg Harbor. The heyday of Door County’s cherry industry was the 1940s and ’50s, when 700 growers produced up to 50 million pounds of cherries […]

  • Discover Wisconsin’s Rich Entertainment History

    Did you know that Wisconsin is not only the home of legendary stars of the stage and screen, but that it also has one of the world’s major research centers for entertainment history?  The Ephraim Historical Foundation will welcome Mary Huelsbeck, assistant director of the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research at UW-Madison, to […]

  • Pulse of Philanthropy: Why I Choose to Love the Granary

    For a long time, I couldn’t get excited about the Teweles and Brandeis granary in Sturgeon Bay. A few years ago, many people I admire were vehement about the need to save this 120-year-old structure from destruction, yet others I respect were equally certain that it has no place in our future. Frankly, I just […]

  • Maritime Week Kicks Off in Sturgeon Bay

    It’s time once again to salute the U.S. Coast Guard during Sturgeon Bay’s Maritime Week. Events began Aug. 5 with a golf outing at Idlewild Golf Course and will continue through Aug. 15. Want to see everything the event has to offer? This guide will get you started. Aug. 6: Coast Guard vs. City Allstars […]

  • Horseshoe Bay Farms Tour Offers Glimpses of Past, Future

    Nestled below the Niagara Escarpment and overlooking Horseshoe Bay just east of Horseshoe Bay Road, farm structures painted in a rare combination of gray and white were already shining examples of historical innovation. Now, even more ambitious plans await the century-plus-old farmstead, which transitioned to a nonprofit in 2018. Horseshoe Bay Farms is the largest […]

  • Taxidermy Demonstration at Historical Museum

    The Door County Historical Museum will host its second free, live taxidermy demonstration with master taxidermist Mike Orthober on July 31, 10 am – 4 pm; and its third demonstration Aug. 28. Orthober – the creator of the museum’s Seasons of Life diorama and a member of the Taxidermy Hall of Fame – will demonstrate his skills […]

  • Learn How to Preserve Photos, Memorabilia

    Learn how to preserve family photos and memorabilia during the Ephraim Historical Foundation’s next History Speaks program Aug. 4, 7:30-8:30 pm, at the Ephraim Village Hall, 9996 Hwy 42. Cody Schreck, curator of the Ephraim Historical Foundation, will present this free program. Visit or call 920.854.9688 to learn more.

  • Explore The Clearing during Interpretive Hikes

    The 86-year history, folklore and landscape of The Clearing Folk School are the subjects of free, interpretive hikes to the historical campus and buildings led by volunteer docents on Saturdays and Sundays through Oct. 31. The two-hour hiking tours begin at 1 pm at the Jens Jensen Visitor Center, 12171 Garrett Bay Road in Ellison […]

  • Learn the History of Northern Sky Theater

    The Ephraim Historical Foundation welcomes Holly Feldman, Northern Sky Theater’s director of development and public relations, as its next History Speaks program presenter July 28, 7:30-8:30 pm. She’ll share an insider’s look at Northern Sky: how it began and how it has thrived for the past 50 years.  Northern Sky Theater shares American culture through […]

  • Resilience: 150 Years of the Door County Fair

    When the carnival rides hum to life, the sweet smell of funnel cakes wafts through the air, and the county’s youth unload their pigs, cows and crafts along the midway at the Door County Fairgrounds on July 28, the 150-year legacy of the Door County Fair will live on. Behind the entertainment and thrills rests […]

  • Myrtle Clark, 93, Publishes Memoirs of a Farm Girl

    On her 90th birthday in 2018, Myrtle Johnson Clark went zip-lining. This year, when she turned 93, she published a book. Zip-lining was on her bucket list. Writing her memoirs definitely was not, but spiritual urgings (and frequent reminders from her daughter, Judy) compelled her to finally put words on paper. Myrtle, the oldest of […]

  • Learn About Egg Harbor’s First Permanent Resident

    The Egg Harbor Historical Society will welcome society member Glen Tanck to the Kress Pavilion, 7845 Church St. in Egg Harbor, on July 27, 7 pm, to present a free program about Milton Lyman, the first permanent resident of  Egg Harbor.  Lyman made many important contributions to the early history of Egg Harbor and Door […]

  • Brussels Store Is Empty No More

    When Heather Truett and Nick Waack fell in love with the old building in Brussels in 2014, they knew it was the place where they wanted to create their dream for the future. What they didn’t know then — but would soon hear from longtime community residents — was not only how happy those locals […]

  • Jacksonport Historical Society Offers Merchandise at Farmers Markets

    The Jacksonport Historical Society (JHS) will have a display of books it’s published about Jacksonport families, posters, prints, notecards and CDs at the town’s July 27 and Aug. 3 farmers markets.  Featured items will include coffee-table books of Fred Erskine’s photographs of Door County during the 20th century and pictures he took in Europe during […]

  • Maritime Wonders: Views from Sturgeon Bay’s Lighthouse Tower

    As I left Sturgeon Bay’s steel bridge, driving south on Michigan Street, the Door County Maritime Museum’s newest attraction rose into view: the Jim Kress Maritime Lighthouse Tower. As Door County’s tallest building, it watches over the historically rich and geographically distinctive Sturgeon Bay. The idea for a lighthouse tower grew out of the museum’s […]