Middleton History

Middleton traces its beginnings to an 1832 fur trading post along the northern shore of Lake Mendota near what is now Mendota County Park. The Township of Middleton was created in 1848 and about a decade later, in 1856, the much-coveted railroad arrived, establishing Middleton as a hub of activity for the area. The current depot was built in 1895 and serves as the Visit Middleton center, located on Parmenter Street downtown.

Middleton incorporated as a village in 1905 and became a city in 1963. Today the city retains its beautiful historic charm and celebrates its landmarks. For more history and photos of Middleton, check out the Middleton Historical Society and Rowley Museum.

Historic Walking Tours

The Historic Walking Tour takes you on a stroll through Middleton’s past and right by these locations. See the list and map below, or view, download and print the full map and descriptions by clicking here.

  1. First high school, 1878
  2. Little White Church on the Hill, 1870
  3. Pierstorff House, circa 1890
  4. Railroad Depot, 1895
  5. Opera House, 1903
  6. Weinberg/Schroeder Building, 1868
  7. American Hotel, 1867
  8. Wolf House, 1868
  9. Rowley House, 1868
  10. Schwenn House, 1902

Middleton Landmark Tours

See Middleton’s rich history come to life on our Landmarks Tour! Visit 21 stops around the city for a glimpse into the past of the Good Neighbor City.

Download and print the full Landmarks Tour here. Maps are also available at the visitors center.

  1. First Middleton High School
  2. Little White Church on the Hill
  3. W. F. Pierstorff House
  4. Railroad Depot
  5. Opera House
  6. Weinberg/Schroeder Building
  7. American Hotel
  8. H. G. Wolf House
  9. Rowley House

and many more!



a stone building with tables and chairs outside of it

1847 at the Stamm House

The Stamm House was built in 1847 and has served the Middleton community as a…

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a black and white photo of a house

American Hotel

The American Hotel, built between 1867 and 1870, attracted diners from Madison to its infamous…

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a black and white photo of an old house

Blacksmith Shop

This building dates to the 1850s and housed a blacksmith shop that served guests from…

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a black and white photo of a house

H.G. Wolf House

The Wolf House was built in1868 as a private residence for Henry G. Wolf, and…

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a black and white photo of an old house

Little White Church on the Hill

Built by German Methodists and Baptists in 1870 at a cost of $1,800, this building…

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a bunch of shoes that are on a shelf

Middleton Historical Museum (A.K.A. Rowley House)

The Rowley House Museum is housed in a historic landmark building that was built in…

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a train station with a clock on the front of it

Middleton’s Historic Depot, Visitors Center

Built in 1895, this depot was an active passenger station until 1960 and a freight…

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Opera House

The original building on this site, known as the ‘Opera House’, was constructed in 1855…

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an old photo of two people standing in front of a house

Palmer House

The area’s first home, which was built in 1847. The structure you see today was…

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a black and white photo of a small church

Pheasant Branch School

A one-room elementary school was moved to this property in 1861, from Branch Street near…

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a group of men standing outside of a building

Weinberg Building

The Weinberg Building, named after the original owner Charles Weinberg, was built in the spring…

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a black and white photo of an old house

Whittlesey House

The Whittlesey House was the original residence for Mr. Thomas Tucker Whittlesey, and was built…

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