1960s – The Beginning

October 20, 2007

Hello those of you who are reading this blog.  I am writing this with the purpose of preserving, collecting, and gathering historical information about the beautiful little village of Pigeon Falls, WI.  While much of this information will be familiar to many of you, as I researched I was continually surprised and delighted to learn of the many events that took place over the years in this small area we call Pigeon Falls. Hopefully many of you will also appreciate learning about the people and events that shaped our town.

The Historical Sketch of the Town” of Pigeon by H. A. Anderson  describes the circumstances that inspired Cyrus Hine to build a home and business on the waters of the Pigeon Creek.

“When Cyrus Hubbard Hine in exploring the stream now known as Pigeon Creek, in the summer of 1865, found a place where the waters leaped and sang over a rocky bottom, through a narrow channel between high banks, from which rich agricultural lands stretched far in every direction, Reason at once whispered: “Here is a place for a mill and a factory;” and Hine, who was a natural mechanic and had experience in mill construction, found the voice of the singing waters a call to him which he gladly followed.

Mr. Hine, with his wife Catherine and daughters, had been a resident of the town of Preston in our county since 1856, but having found what he considered a natural fall in the waters of Pigeon Creek he at once began the building of a home, feed mill and carding mill, and in the fall of 1865 became the first inhabitant where the village of Pigeon Falls is located.

A little wizened, wiry man, weighing but a little more than a hundred pounds, as independent in his habits and actions as he was in though, Mr. Hine gave but little attention to social conventions, religious creeds or even political issues. His world lay mostly within reach of his hands and within these limits he labored constantly and cheerfully, never meddling with outside affairs. His integrity, sobriety and freedom from all social vices were taken for granted, because contrary qualities would have been absolutely out of harmony with his general character.”

“The Historical Sketch of the Town of Pigeon” by H. A. Anderson.

The History of Trempealeau County Wisconsin, 1917.

“He built his home on the north side of the creek …This house known as the “Hines House” was inhabited by many a young coupleas they started out in life until 1925 when the road became U. S. Hwy 53 and was remooved to make way for the new right-of-way.  Mr. hine and his family became the lone residents of the settlement for five years while he operated the feed mill and carding factory.  Pigeon Falls was called “The Factory” because of the carding outfit Mr. Hines owned and operated.  On nearly every farm sheep were raised at that time and wool was carded at the mill.”

from “Pigeon Falls School History”

Mr. Hine was born in Chautauqua County, New York, April 8, 1819; came to Illinois in 1843; married Catherine Barber at Joliet, Ill., 1847, with whom he had two children, to-wit: Laura Thompson, who was killed by lightning at the home of her husband, William Thompson, in the town of Preston, June 17, 1882, and Mrs. Eva S. Bather. Mr. Hine died at Whitehall, Wis., Feb. 13, 1884.

Mrs. Hine was noted for her excellent table and industrious habits. She was born May 2, 1830, and died at Whitehall May 6, 1894. She sleeps beside her husband in the Whitehall Cemetery.”

“The Historical Sketch of the Town of Pigeon” by H. A. Anderson. The History of Trempealeau

County Wisconsin, 1917.

The Pigeon Creek Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Congegation of Pigeon Falls was organized on Aug. 18, 1866 by Rev. O. Waldeland of Trempealeau Valley.

He had been requested by the few early Norwegian Lutheran settlers residing in the vicinity of the present Pigeon Falls to come and preach for them.  He complied with the request.  Services were usually held in the homes and on week days.  The minister could not preach for them on Sundays because his call was so large that he could not reach around to them all on Sundays.  He had been requested by the few early Norwegian Lutheran settlers residing in the vicinity of the present Pigeon Falls to come and preach for them.   He complied with the request.  Services were usually held in the homes and on week days. The minister could not preach for them on Sundays because his call was so large that he could not reach around to them all on Sundays.  Among the early settlers who organized the congregation were:  Peder Pederson, Kristian Kaas, Erick and Lars Larson, Ole Iverson Hofstad, Anton Ekern, and Anders Kristianson.  Services were usually held in Peder Pederson’s and Erick Larson’s homes and in the school house.  The organizational meeting of Aug. 18, 1866, was at Erick Larson’s home.  The second service was at the home of Anders Kristiansen on November 9th of the same year.  In 1867 seven services were held, and in 1868 eight services were held.”-from the booklet “125th Anniversary Pigeon Creek Evangelical Lutheran Church 1866-1991 August 11, 1991.”


Whitehall, WI

Whitehall, WI

cyrus-hines-wifes-grave

Whitehall, WI

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