It’s a hidden treasure in Brookfield – the Dousman Stagecoach Inn. It was built in 1843, five years before Wisconsin became a state. It once stood on the wood plank road that extended from Milwaukee to Watertown.
During the stagecoach days, hundreds of travelers stayed at the Inn when making the 58 mile journey between Milwaukee to Watertown.
It’s on the National Register of Historic Places and is Brookfield’s only historic structure.
It was owned by the Behling family for nearly one hundred years. Behling gave his home to the city of Brookfield when North Shore Bank bought the land. The city created a public park for the building.
The city leases the home to the Elmbrook Historical Society. The lease specifies that the Society is responsible for all costs associated with the building. This included the substantial costs of moving the structure in 1981 and the cost of restoring the building to its days as a Stagecoach Inn. All traces of the 20th century were removed from this historic treasure.
The society continues to maintain and care for the home. Membership dues contribute to the expense of operating the home. Most fund raising is accomplished through public and private tours, and events such as the Civil War Re-enactment (in May), Days Gone By (October) and Christmas at the Inn (December).
The Dousman Stagecoach Inn is in its 164th year. The original siding is decaying and requires complete restoration. The cost exceeds $115,000.
The Elmbrook Historical Society, a (501) (c3) organization needs your help. Please send your tax-deductible contribution to: Elmbrook Historical Society; Capital Campaign; P.O. Box 292; Brookfield, WI 53008-0292
Help preserve this irreplaceable historic treasure.