Home > Parish Roots (Pre 1914) > Belgian Immigrants Settle in Allouez

Belgian Immigrants Settle in Allouez



In the late 1870’s, Belgians began to settle in Allouez bringing with them their rich Catholic heritage. Some had been displaced from the Peshtigo fire in the fall of 1871 which swept through their settlements.

When these early Belgians arrived, Allouez had two main wagon roads. They were built in 1863-64, by prospectors who had great hopes that areas south would become a major copper mining district similar to that in Michigan.

One of these roads from the Fond du Lac mine on the range to the Nemadji river, terminated at a ferry landing established on the river near what would become the 4th street bridge. Another road was built branching from this one near to what would become the ore dock scale house site by Bluff creek. It went southwesterly to the Copper Creek mine. (Source: Superior Telegram, February 10, 1906).

Although a copper boom never occurred, as the known deposits were too small or sporadic to warrant serious development, coal and iron ore was beginning to make its mark in the 1890’s when more Belgians came to the area looking for work. After landing in Buffalo, New York, they were sent by representatives of coal and iron companies to work at the coal yards and ore docks in Wisconsin.


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Belgian Immigrants Settle in Allouez

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