Welcome To Green Bay Wisconsin!
Green Bay is the oldest town in Wisconsin and possibly the best known "little" town in the USA and not just because of the Green Bay Packers.
Rivers lakes and oceans were the transportation routes in early times. The location of a city was usually determined by these transportation routes. Green Bay sits on a major transition point from the Great Lakes to the inner continent. While many people just passed through, others decided to stay and make it their home.
In the 17th century, Jean Nicolet was the first European to come to Green Bay. In 1634 he was sent to establish a fur trade with the area indians. Frenchmen had things that indians wanted, such as knives, guns, cloth while the indians had furs. The Indians, at the time, were hunters and gatherers; they only took what they needed; the fur trade changed all of that. People that settled in the area from about 1800-1830, generally had their farms on the riverfront and then they had what was called "French long lots" where the lot stretched out from the river for possibly miles. The French and Indian war gave control of the area to the British. The war of 1812 drove out the British and brought the an American expedition that established Forth Howard.
While the Oneida Indians were mistreated taken advantage of through many treaties and outright confiscation of their lands, much of the West side of Green Bay, on the west side of the Fox River, remains Oneida Indian land.
Old Northwest Territory, Michigan Territory, in 1836 became the Wisconsin Territory.
Aster, Navarena = Green Bay.
Morgan Martin was probably the most important legal figure in the territory at the time. He wrote the state constitution and was the territorial delegate to Congress. The Martin's house was called Hazelwood. It was probably one of the nicest houses in Wisconsin. Gracious, well designed and well made for the 1830s. Morgan Martin wrote the Wisconsin State Constitution on his dining room table. Morgan Martin was the first attorney in the state and therefore he would know more about territorial law. Wisconsin became a state on May 29th, 1848 by declaration of President James K. Pope. Now, instead of politics being controlled by appointment, people could vote.
Most immigrants coming to Green Bay were foreigners.
Lack of land in Europe, religious dissatisfaction and the opportunity of Wisconsin's new statehood resulted in Wisconsin having the largest number of European ethnic groups as any of the other states. It was heavily Catholic and still is today. 1821 the first permanent church: St. Johns the Evangelist. It is the oldest continuous church in Wisconsin.
Back in the 1850s nobody would have dreamed that Green Bay would be a world wide distributor in the cheese industry. In 1860 Green Bay was the second largest wheat producer in the United States. The bottom fell out of this market and the farmers pretty much settled on dairy. Milking cows was seen as a woman's job so it was a difficult transition for the men. One problem with milk: it spoils quickly. But not if it is cheese. Cheese will keep pretty much indefinitely. Towns began to consist of a tavern, a church and a cheese factory. The market was not domestic but foreign. The cheese would be taken by wagons to Green Bay and then shipped to England. Even today, the vast amount of Wisconsin cheese is sold outside of the state of Wisconsin.
Green Bay, because of its location, has pretty much been the distribution source of many different items. It was a shipping distribution hub. Many businesses were devoted just to storage. One spot was called Cheeseville. There was Kraft, Borden, Schreiber and Stella, Superior. Green Bay was the center of the US cheese industry. There was a time when every dairy farmer in the country looked to Green Bay to set the price of its milk thanks to the USDA using the National Cheese Exchange in Green Bay to set the price of cheese because the price of cheese determined the price of milk. They said: this is what cheese is selling for so this is the price that milk will sell for nationwide and therefore this is what farmers would be paid for their milk.
Back in the middle 1990s farmers held a protest in Green Bay where they drove their tractors around the National Cheese Exchange. Shortly after that, the National Cheese Exchange moved to the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.
Football has been played in Green Bay since 1895.