Mr. Waters' architectural influence was seen throughout the state of Wisconsin, from Ashland on Lake Superior's southern shore to Watertown situated along the Rock River. Much of his work outside of Oshkosh was within a short distance of home. A May 19th, 1881 article in the Oshkosh Weekly Northwestern was an interview with the architect and a litany of his works in progress. He's quoted as saying, "I've never known business to be so rushing in the office as it was this spring." The demand was largely, however, from out of town. Ripon, some twenty miles southwest of Oshkosh was a place which provided several building commissions: including residential, educational and commercial structures. One of the buildings mentioned in the newspaper was a new school house in that city.
Friday, December 14, 2012
On April 21, 1900 the Oshkosh Weekly Northwestern reported that the firm of William Waters & Son was successful in it's bid to win the design contract for the high school at New Lisbon, a community about ninety five miles west of Oshkosh in Juneau County. The building was to cost $25,000 and the younger Mr. Waters was on his way to that city to advertise for a contractor and make other preparations. A year later there was another article regarding the New Lisbon school, praising the community of a thousand citizens for building a fine and modern school. The headline read "High School at New Lisbon Tho Small May Give Oshkosh Ideas." Perhaps that was an admonishment, suggesting the Oshkosh School Board may wish to scrutinize the plans of the building; there being a protracted discussion about a new high school in Oshkosh.
Monday, December 10, 2012
Smith School in Oshkosh, Wittenberg and Brandon High Schools were not the only schools for which Mr. Waters used the same plans. The 1880's were busy times for William Waters with much work in Oshkosh and the growing north land. In mid December of 1887 a one line notice was printed in the Oshkosh Weekly Northwestern stating the architect was preparing plans for a school in Shawano. No mention was made that it was to be the new high school and the reader is given no dimensions, construction materials or other specifications. One may speculate the school was built in 1888 and may have been finished by the start of school that year. The building remained in service for many years but not always as the high school, later it became a grade school and was renamed Lincoln School but was destroyed by fire in 1924.