Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Spring Green in Iowa County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Shot Tower

 
 
Shot Tower Marker image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
1. Shot Tower Marker
Inscription. Twenty years before Wisconsin became a state, the discovery of vast lead deposits brought a population boom to this area.

Green Bay merchant Daniel Whitney organized the Wisconsin Shot Company to build a shot tower on this site. T.B. Shaunce dug out the shafts with pick and gad and removed the earth in buckets. The history of the shot tower is told in detailed exhibits within the tower house.

Men like Daniel Whitney and T.B. Shaunce worked with humble tools and crude methods, utilizing Engineering ideas and principles which provided the highly sophisticated procedures of today's Manufacturing Engineers.
 
Erected 1977 by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, Milwaukee Chapter 4. (Marker Number 238.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Wisconsin Historical Society marker series.
 
Location. 43° 9.005′ N, 90° 2.71′ W. Marker is near Spring Green, Wisconsin, in Iowa County. Marker can be reached from County Highway C 2 miles west of U.S. 14, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. The marker is accessible via a paved but somewhat steep path starting at the parking lot in the Tower Hill Shelter area in Tower Hill State Park. A vehicle admission
Shot Tower Marker image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
2. Shot Tower Marker
The smelter house is in the background.
sticker is required to stop in the park. Theoretically, one could avoid the fee by parking on the highway and walking into the park; aside from the safety issues, however, it is worth the price of admission to visit the park. Marker is in this post office area: Spring Green WI 53588, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 12 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Tower Hill State Park (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Site of Old Helena (about 600 feet away); Military River Crossing (approx. 0.9 miles away); Welcome to Unity Chapel (approx. 1.5 miles away); Elizabeth Wright Ingraham (approx. 1.5 miles away); Frank Lloyd Wright (approx. 1.5 miles away); Western Escape (approx. 2.8 miles away); Old Military Road (approx. 11.8 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Spring Green.
 
Also see . . .  Tower Hill State Park. (Submitted on September 8, 2010, by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin.)
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
Smelter House image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
3. Smelter House
The path to the Shot Tower marker as it approaches the smelter house.
Smelter-House Description image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
4. Smelter-House Description
You are inside a reproduction of the original smelter-house that stood on this site from about 1833-1861.

Lead from the mines of southwest Wisconsin was brought here in ox-drawn wagons and melted in an iron kettle in the open fire place.

The molten lead was then poured through holes in the side of a ladle, down the 180 ft. shaft. As the particles of lead fell, they assumed a spherical shape and cooled slightly, forming shot.

A pool of water at the bottom of the shaft broke the fall of the shot and completed its cooling.
Inside the Smelter House image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
5. Inside the Smelter House
The open fire and kettle for melting the lead is on the left, with the opening to the drop shaft on the right.
Looking Down the Drop Shaft in the Smelter House image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
6. Looking Down the Drop Shaft in the Smelter House
Looking Down the Outside of the Drop Shaft image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
7. Looking Down the Outside of the Drop Shaft
View from the top of the Drop Shaft image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
8. View from the top of the Drop Shaft
View from the top of the Drop Shaft image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
9. View from the top of the Drop Shaft
Spring Green and the Wisconsin River are in the distance.
Shot Tower Sign image. Click for full size.
By William J. Toman, September 5, 2010
10. Shot Tower Sign
This sign is near the beginning of the path to the Shot Tower marker. The sign points to the Site of Old Helena and Tower Hill State Park markers.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 608 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. submitted on , by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin.   10. submitted on , by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
Paid Advertisement