Establishing this Shorewood church took an unusually persistent man. Luther Memorial Chapel in Shorewood marks its 100th anniversary in 2016. Carl A. Swanson photo
Slightly built and bespectacled, 30-year-old Rev. Theodore Kissling had already lived an adventurous life when his church’s mission board asked him, in 1914, to organize a congregation in the fast-growing community that would become Shorewood.
That church, Luther Memorial Chapel, 3833 N. Maryland Ave., marked its 100th anniversary in 2016. Oddly, both its choir and Sunday School are older than the congregation itself. It’s a story of twists, turns, setbacks – and a young pastor who overcame them all.
The Gordon Park bathing pavilion was the most popular blog post for the second year running. Photo by Jos. Brown.
Thank you for a great year in 2015! This blog was viewed 29,000 times in the past year. In 2015, 43 new posts were added to the site (for a total of 90) and 378 pictures uploaded, about a picture per day.
These are the top five posts of 2015. Have you read them all?
- Amid the ruins of Gordon Park’s riverside bathing pavilion
- Secrets of Shorewood’s Hubbard Park
- Just a neighborhood movie theater
- Drinking Pabst in Whitefish Bay
- Sunk, burned, and haunted, this tugboat keeps on working
Much more is on the way in 2016 —stay tuned!
In 1935, Village Hall in Shorewood was damaged by a powerful explosion. It was the first of an nine-day wave of terror bombings that spread across Milwaukee. Photo illustration by Carl Swanson
At 7:23 p.m. on Oct. 26, 1935, 2-year-old William Shea was asleep in his crib when a tremendous explosion blew in his bedroom window and peppered his blanket with needle-sharp glass shards. Young William was unhurt, but 12 windows in his family’s house were shattered as were most of the windows in residences up and down the 3900 block of Murray Avenue in Shorewood.
Dust and smoke swirled in the air as neighbors ran from their homes seeking the cause of the intense blast. Dynamite! No mistaking the sweetish smell or the headache-inducing nitroglycerine fumes.
The Northwestern Union built north out of downtown in the 1880s, cutting through hills and filling in ravines as they went. This photo was taken at the location of today’s Hubbard Park in Shorewood. Courtesy Milwaukee County Historical Society
In the 1880s the Northwestern Union Ry. began building north along the east bank of the Milwaukee River. In time these tracks became part of the Chicago & North Western system and hosted some of the fastest long-distance passenger trains in the world. But before that could happen, the railroad had to resolve the great apple orchard standoff.
Spanning 532 feet and requiring more than 20,000 tons of concrete, the former Capitol Drive bridge over the Milwaukee River was an imposing structure. The bridge was built in 1927. This postcard was mailed in 1946. Carl Swanson collection
Vintage postcards can be odd. Why on earth would a visitor send the folks back home this picture of the 1927 Capitol Drive bridge?
Before answering that question, there’s a funny thing about this bridge. In a roundabout way, it saved part of the Milwaukee River from being filled in for a riverside roadway.