Evansville, Wisconsin

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Evansville is a city in Rock County, Wisconsin, United States. The population was 4,039 at the 2000 census (2005 estimate: 4,658).[2] Since 2000, Evansville's population has increased over 21%. It is currently the fastest growing community in Rock County.[citation needed]

Contents

History

Evansville was first settled in the 1830s by New Englanders who were attracted to the area by its pristine wooded landscape and the placid Allen Creek. By 1855, the city recorded its first plat and was complete with homes, shops, and churches.

In 1863, the Chicago and North Western Railway came to Evansville, accelerating growth. At this point, Evansville's economy was based on the surrounding agriculture, mainly wheat and tobacco.

By the turn of the twentieth century Evansville had over 1900 residents, and by the 1920s, most of the buildings in Evansville's future Historic District were completed.

Historic District

The Evansville Historic District, which surrounds Main Street and stretches to the side streets of Garfield Avenue and Liberty Street, includes dozens of historic homes and other structures. The Wisconsin Historical Society called Evansville home to "the finest collection of 1840s to 1915 architecture of any small town in Wisconsin".

Of particular note is the Eager Free Public Library building at 39 W. Main Street in the historic district. The building was built with the bequest of a leading citizen, Almeron Eager, in 1908. Designed by the architectural firm of Claude and Starck of Madison, WI, in the Prairie style, it features stained glass windows and plaster friezes just below the overhanging roof line. A 1994 addition at the rear of the original building was designed to match the original architecture, while adding much needed space and ADA accessibility. The intersection on which the library stands also contains a Greek Revival home (now a funeral parlor), a High Victorian Gothic brick home (now housing the local Masonic Temple) and a classic Victorian "Painted Lady" home, still a private residence.

The Evansville Seminary was located near College Drive in the district. Its building was designed by architect August Kutzbock.

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