‘Monument’-al achievement: Iraqi War Memorial in St. Croix County

Little town is site of state’s first — and only — memorial wall honoring Wisconsin’s Iraq War dead
By Barbara Lyon
Dunn County News

Just beyond Dunn County’s western border sits the tiny, unincorporated hamlet of Hersey. To see it today, visitors might find it hard to believe that it was once St. Croix County’s largest town.

According to Hersey Cave bar owner Steve Schreiber, the once-bustling municipality —founded in the late 1800s by lumber baron Hersey Adam — once boasted 10 taverns, a bank, livery stable, cheese factory, churches, grocery store and mercantile exchange.

When the original wood-framed town hall burned down, it was replaced by a brick structure, built in 1872 by Civil War veterans. Almost two years ago, time and the elements took their toll on the venerable building and it was torn down.

But all was not lost. Schreiber, a local history buff who is working on a book about Hersey, salvaged the Menomonie-manufactured bricks and other artifacts.

Faced with a pile of old bricks, he pondered how he could put them to meaningful use.

It occurred to him that Wisconsin has sacrificed more than its share of soldiers in the Iraq War. A memorial wall constructed of old Hersey town hall brick, he thought, would be a fitting way of honoring the state’s fallen soldiers.

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