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9 Must-Visit Historic Sites In Wauwatosa, Wisconsin


by Elana Parisi


Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, is a city steeped in rich history, offering visitors a glimpse into the past through its array of captivating historic sites. From architectural marvels to significant landmarks, Wauwatosa boasts a tapestry of historical treasures that beckon exploration. Whether you're a history enthusiast, architecture buff, or simply intrigued by the stories of yesteryear, Wauwatosa's historic sites promise an enriching and immersive experience.

In this article, we'll embark on a journey through time, uncovering nine must-visit historic sites in Wauwatosa. Each site holds a unique story, reflecting the city's heritage and contributing to its vibrant tapestry of culture and tradition. So, prepare to step back in time as we delve into the captivating history of Wauwatosa, where every corner reveals a new chapter waiting to be discovered.

The Little Red Store

Nestled along the Menomonee River, The Little Red Store stands as a testament to Wauwatosa's rich history. This iconic building, dating back to the 1850s, served as a trading post, a post office, and a general store, playing a pivotal role in the community's early development. Today, it has been lovingly restored and transformed into a charming museum, offering visitors a glimpse into the area's past. The museum showcases artifacts, photographs, and exhibits that vividly depict the daily life and commerce of Wauwatosa's early settlers, providing a captivating experience for history enthusiasts and curious minds alike.

The Kneeland-Walker House

The Kneeland-Walker House, a stunning example of Greek Revival architecture, exudes timeless elegance and historical significance. Built in 1850, this grand mansion has witnessed Wauwatosa's evolution through the decades. Visitors can embark on a guided tour of the meticulously preserved interior, adorned with period furnishings and decor, allowing them to immerse themselves in the opulence and refinement of the Victorian era. The house's lush gardens and grounds offer a tranquil retreat, inviting guests to savor the beauty and serenity of this cherished historic landmark.

The Wauwatosa Woman's Club Clubhouse

The Wauwatosa Woman's Club Clubhouse, a striking architectural gem, stands as a testament to the enduring legacy of women's contributions to the community. This elegant structure, dating back to 1925, showcases exquisite craftsmanship and timeless design elements. Stepping inside, visitors are greeted by the graceful ambiance of the clubhouse, which has been meticulously preserved to retain its original charm. The clubhouse hosts various events and programs, serving as a vibrant hub for cultural and social gatherings, honoring the vision and dedication of the pioneering women who shaped Wauwatosa's history.

The Charles Hart Homestead

The Charles Hart Homestead, a cherished landmark nestled amidst picturesque surroundings, offers a captivating glimpse into Wauwatosa's agricultural heritage. Dating back to the mid-1800s, this historic homestead provides a window into the daily life and traditions of early farming families in the region. Visitors can explore the meticulously restored farmhouse, barn, and outbuildings, gaining insight into the resilience and ingenuity of the early settlers. The homestead's serene ambiance and pastoral setting provide a tranquil escape, inviting guests to connect with the land and appreciate the enduring spirit of Wauwatosa's farming legacy.

The First Congregational Church

The First Congregational Church, a revered architectural marvel, stands as a beacon of faith and community in Wauwatosa. With its striking Gothic Revival design and soaring spire, this historic church has been a cherished landmark since its construction in Stepping through its ornate doors, visitors are enveloped in a sense of reverence and awe, as they behold the exquisite stained glass windows, intricate woodwork, and timeless beauty of the sanctuary. The church's rich history and steadfast presence serve as a testament to the enduring faith and spiritual heritage woven into the fabric of Wauwatosa's identity.

The Wauwatosa Historical Society

The Wauwatosa Historical Society, a treasure trove of local heritage, beckons visitors to embark on a captivating journey through the annals of the city's past. Housed within the Kneeland-Walker House, this esteemed institution preserves and showcases an extensive collection of artifacts, documents, and photographs that illuminate Wauwatosa's evolution over the centuries. From engaging exhibits that chronicle the area's early settlements to insightful displays highlighting key moments in the city's growth, the Historical Society offers a compelling narrative of Wauwatosa's vibrant history, fostering a deep appreciation for the community's enduring legacy.

The Jacobus Park Pavilion

The Jacobus Park Pavilion, a beloved architectural gem nestled within the scenic Jacobus Park, stands as a testament to Wauwatosa's commitment to preserving its natural beauty and heritage. This picturesque pavilion, constructed in the 1930s, exudes timeless charm and serves as a gathering place for community events, celebrations, and leisurely strolls. The pavilion's rustic elegance and idyllic setting amidst lush greenery and tranquil waters create a captivating backdrop for gatherings, fostering cherished memories and a profound connection to Wauwatosa's enchanting landscapes.

The Milwaukee County Grounds

The Milwaukee County Grounds, a sprawling expanse of natural beauty and historical significance, offers a tapestry of captivating landscapes and recreational opportunities. This expansive green space, encompassing woodlands, prairies, and trails, provides a sanctuary for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. The grounds also bear witness to the rich tapestry of Wauwatosa's history, as they encompass the remnants of the historic Milwaukee County Insane Asylum, offering a poignant reminder of the area's commitment to compassionate care and mental health advocacy. Visitors can explore the grounds, partake in outdoor activities, and reflect upon the harmonious coexistence of history and natural splendor within Wauwatosa's embrace.

The Wauwatosa Cemetery

The Wauwatosa Cemetery, a hallowed sanctuary of remembrance and reverence, holds a profound place in the heart of the community. Established in the mid-1800s, this serene burial ground serves as a poignant testament to Wauwatosa's heritage, with its meticulously manicured grounds and timeless monuments bearing witness to the lives and legacies of generations past. The cemetery's tranquil beauty and contemplative atmosphere offer solace and reflection, inviting visitors to honor the enduring spirit of Wauwatosa's pioneers and cherished residents, whose stories are eternally woven into the fabric of the city's history.

This comprehensive guide invites visitors to embark on a captivating journey through the storied past of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, and immerse themselves in the timeless allure of its historic sites. Whether delving into the rich tapestry of local heritage at the Wauwatosa Historical Society or savoring the architectural splendor of the Kneeland-Walker House, each historic site offers a compelling narrative of the city's evolution and enduring legacy. With its seamless blend of historical significance and natural beauty, Wauwatosa beckons travelers to embrace the allure of its past and forge a deeper connection to its vibrant heritage.


Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, is a treasure trove of historic sites that offer a glimpse into the rich tapestry of the region's past. From the iconic Kneeland-Walker House to the enchanting Little Red Store, each site is steeped in history and brimming with stories waiting to be discovered. Whether you're a history enthusiast, a curious traveler, or a local resident, these nine must-visit historic sites promise to captivate and inspire. By exploring these landmarks, visitors can forge a deeper connection with Wauwatosa's heritage and gain a newfound appreciation for the enduring legacy of this charming Wisconsin city.


Q: Are these historic sites suitable for family visits?
A: Yes, these historic sites are perfect for family outings, offering enriching experiences for visitors of all ages.

Q: Can I take guided tours of these historic sites?
A: Many of these sites offer guided tours, providing in-depth insights into their historical significance and captivating stories.