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Hawks Inn

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c. 1846. 428 Wells St.

A rare surviving stagecoach inn, this two-story clapboard house was a favorite stopping place for travelers on the plank road between Milwaukee and the territorial capital in Madison. Proprietor Nelson Hawks, known for the fine food and drink he served, also owned two early local mills and platted some of the land in town. His inn stood at the corner of Main and Genesee streets, but local preservationists moved it to this location in 1960 to save it from demolition. Like the stagecoach inn in Greenbush (SB14), the Hawks is a simple Greek Revival style. A one-story porch with simple Doric pillars and a balustraded deck spans the facade. Originally an ell housed a large kitchen, and a one-story wing was added soon after the inn was built. Both were gone by 1936. The front porch was missing, too, but the Hawks Inn Historical Society reconstructed it in the 1960s as a period house museum. Later the organization built a kitchen wing that recalls but does not replicate the old one.

Writing Credits

Marsha Weisiger et al.


What's Nearby


Marsha Weisiger et al., "Hawks Inn", [Delafield, Wisconsin], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Wisconsin

Buildings of Wisconsin, Marsha Weisiger and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2017, 202-202.

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