contentsMauston WI Chamberads

History of the Boorman House

Mauston was founded by Milton M. Maughs, and the town was originally named Maughs Town after its founder; it was based on the lumber industry of early Wisconsin. Learn more about Mauston’s storied past at the Boorman House, built by Benjamin C. Boorman at 211 N. Union St.

Boorman was born Sept. 3, 1830, in Kent County, England, emigrated to New York in 1840 and was apprenticed at an early age by the owners of Wadsworth Flouring Mills. He came to his father’s farm near Delevan in 1845 where he worked for several years.

Construction began in 1874 on a new 13-room home for the Boorman family, and was completed in 1876. The exterior was covered with a cream colored brick, made by S.E. Ellsworth at his yard about a half-mile south of the Allaby corner, junction of County Trunk G and State Highway 82. The interior lumber was of the finest woods being finished in the Boorman Mill. The building was erected on lots 13 and 20, Boorman’s Addition, and stood in a beautiful grove of trees. There was a carriage shed, an extensive lawn and a formal garden. Several brick sidewalks extended to the street. There was a large, columned porch on the front or east side of the house and cupola or “Widow’s Walk” adorned the roof.

The rooms were large and airy with a curved mahogany staircase to the second floor. Three marble fireplaces graced three rooms and apertures throughout the house held many lamps. The house was furnished with the finest silver, carpeting and furniture including a Grand Piano. The cost of the building was $12,000.

Boorman died Aug. 17, 1886 of consumption and after the closing of his estate, Jeff T. Heath came into possession of the mills, dam and the Boorman House. On the death of Heath in 1903, the house was purchased by Tom Powers, a well-known Mauston citizen. He lived there with his family, selling to John Tremain about 1930 who sold to Francis Gardner and his wife. They sold the house to Edward Pierce about 1962.

The Juneau County Historical Society was formed at the Boorman House in 1963 and used the house for a museum for a number of years before moving to the Boorman House about 1978.

The historical society purchased the house for a Museum from Edward W. Pierce on Aug. 6, 1987.

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