As many local school children have been discovering for years, The Hawks Inn is a great place to go to learn more about the history of Delafield.
History of Delafield, WI – est. 1843
Wisconsin, once part of the Michigan Territory, became the Wisconsin Territory after Michigan gained statehood. Its settlement began in the early nineteenth century when the government offered land at a price of one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre. The area which is now Delafield was dotted with sparkling lakes, clear river streams and hardwood forests. Seasonal fishing and hunting camps of several Indian tribes could be found on the shores of the lakes and streams. Cabins were first settled on this rolling landscape in 1839. Other settlers, including farmers and merchants, soon followed. herds of sheep began to graze the gentle hills as grist and saw mills appeared along the streams.
Perhaps Delafield’s most famous settler was Nelson Hawks who moved here with his family from the state of New York. Mr. Hawks soon built a three story inn as a stage coach stop in 1846. Recognized by the National Register of Historic Places, the Hawks Inn still stands today as an educational museum. Mr. Hawks named this little settlement Delafield and in 1848, the Wisconsin Territory became the state of Wisconsin. Today this historic community thrives with over six thousand residents. Situated twenty-five miles west of Milwaukee and fifty miles east of Madison, the state capitol, Delafield continues to attract families and businesses to its historic and beautiful landscape.