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Discovered by 13-year-old Donald Baldwin in 1952, the site was excavated by archeologists from the Milwaukee Public Museum and the Wisconsin Historical Society, aided by the Oconto County Historical Society’s founder George E. (Jimmy) Hall and Senator Reuben LaFave. This Archaic burial cemetery is one of only four of its kind known today. Twenty-two burial pits were uncovered, although as many as two hundred burials may have occurred here. The majority are believed to have been destroyed by gravel quarrying in the 1920s, but, had it not been for quarrying, the site might not have been discovered at all.

Charles Werrebroeck Home Charles and Emma Werrebroeck and their infant daughter, Anna, immigrated to the United States from Belgium in 1911. Charles, a mason by trade, built the brick Werrebroeck home in 1924. Molds were used to form basement blocks over which he built a traditional brick Belgian farmhouse. His first house here was wood, which was destroyed by fire.

His property originally had outbuildings, several barns, and a wood shed. A porch attached to the front of the house helped insulate against the harsh Wisconsin winters.  The home did not have plumbing or central heating; the Werrebroeck’s heat was provided by two stoves—the cooking stove in the kitchen and a pot-bellied stove in the house’s other main room. Water was supplied year round by an outdoor pump located at the south side of the house. This house now serves as the Copper Culture State Park Museum, where exhibits and information are continually updated.

Oconto Archaic Copper Museum The Werrebroeck House and museum present photos and artifacts of the 1952 archeological dig. A short video shows the archeologists at work on the site. A mock excavation pit allows children to experience a dig. More recent artifacts of Native American culture are also on display. A tour guide is available to give an in-depth tour if desired. A foot trail leads from the parking area to a stone monument at location of burial ground.



Experience the life of a well-to-do 1890s family as you tour this fully restored and furnished Victorian northern mansion. The Carriage House contains Copper Culture artifacts, early settler and logging items, carriages, wagons, and antique car collection.

917 Park Avenue, Oconto 920-834-6206 Memorial Day weekend - Labor Day • M, W, TH & F 12-4, Sat – Sun 10-4


Profile for Oconto County

2020 Oconto County Discovery Guide  

2020 Oconto County Discovery Guide