Research and Resources

Otto Schroeder Records Center

The Dane County Historical Society manages its archival collection at the Otto Schroeder Records Center, located in the basement of the Lussier Family Heritage Center. The Heritage Center is located at the southern edge of the City of Madison at 3101 Lake Farm Road.

Beginning in January 2020, the Otto Schroeder Records Center will have office hours on Mondays from 1:30 – 4:00 pm. Please note that the Otto Schroeder Records Center will be closed for weekends and holidays recognized by the Lussier Family Heritage Center, the OSRC host, so please call ahead to make sure we are open.

Otto Schroeder was born in the small farm town of Elben, Hessen Province, Germany on September 26, 1899. He grew up in his native land, and at age sixteen he served in the German military during World War I, assembling Folher tri-planes for the Red Baron’s squadron. He had to serve as a non-combatant during the war because he had two older brothers who were living in the United States. After the war, he received a degree in mechanical engineering from the Technical University of Illenau and began employment in a steel manufacturing plant at Kassel, Germany. He married in 1926 and moved with his wife to San Francisco where he worked for the Soule Steel Company. the Schroeders moved to Napa, California in 1941 where Otto worked in the Basalt Rock Company’s Napa Shipyard. While there, Schroeder is credited with having invented a manufacturing process that revolutionized steel pipe production throughout the world. After World War II, Schroeder worked as an international consultant, supervising the establishment of pipe manufacturing plants in Germany, France, Belgium, Italy, and Japan. Otto Schroeder died in Napa at age 92 in 1992.

In 2002 when the DCHS searching for a permanent home for its archives collection, a fundraising effort was undertaken. the major donor to that effort was Amy Gillibrand, Otto Shroeder’s granddaughter. Her gift made it possible for us to move into our current home at the Lussier Family Heritage Center.

Appointments can also be made by contacting the Dane County Historical Society by email or by phone (608 224 3605). Please be aware that website inquiries usually enjoy a quicker response rate.

Online Resources

The Dane County Historical Society offers several online resources:

  • To view the digitized collection of Tychoberahn, Madison Central High School’s yearbooks, visit Recollection Wisconsin, Tychoberahn
  • To view The Madison Mirror, the student newsletter of Madison’s Central High School, visit the website YUMPU by clicking here. Please note that you may have to register for a new account, but doing so is free.
  • To view the 1873 Dane County Plat Map, click here.

For more information about our other resources, visit the Online Resources page.

Genealogists seeking specific family or ancestor information will not usually find much family information in our collections. With that in mind, we make the following recommendations.

The Dane County Register of Deeds has records for births, deaths, and marriages, as well as land records specific to Dane County.

The Dane County Area Genealogical Society might also have the type of information genealogists are often looking for.

It might also be useful to contact the local historical society that might information specific to your search. A list of local historical societies in Dane County can be found by clicking here.