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Ripon (Wisconsin)

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Ripon [1] is a town in Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin, United States.

Ripon is a town steeped in history. It is the official birthplace of the Republican Party in the United States, and was a hot bed of idealistic thought in the 19th Century. The nearby settlement of Ceresco was a communal experiment that ultimately failed, leading to Ceresco being absorbed by the town of Ripon in 1851. Unsurprisingly, Ripon was a strongly abolitionist enclave.

These days, Ripon hosts both Ripon College and the Little White Schoolhouse, the latter of which is the exact place where the Republican Party was created.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Ripon is fortunate in that it is quite close to the city of Oshkosh. As a result, one may take US 41 North or South to reach Oshkosh and then take WI 44 to Ripon itself.

Alternately, one following US 41 northbound may exit at Fond du Lac, at WI 23, and go west to Ripon.

See[edit][add listing]

  • The Little White Schoolhouse [2]. Open 10AM-4PM every day from Memorial Day through Labor Day; weekends in September and October. Over 150 years old itself, this small building is where the Republican Party was formed in March of 1854. The volume of the visitors it has seen in the century and a half since then, plus the fact that it has been moved at least six times, has created some wear-and-tear on the facility. It has recently undergone renovation, though it seems to have been completed. It costs $1 for adults to enter the building; children 12 and under are free.

Do[edit][add listing]

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • The Republican House, 303 Blackburn Street, 920-748-2150, [3] - Right next to the Little White Schoolhouse is the Republican House Chinese Restaurant. The best Chinese restaurant in town, the owners offer a variety of dishes in that particular category of cuisine, many of which contain seafood. They also serve some American-style food for those looking for a less adventurous meal. The decor changes depending on which side of the restaurant one is on; towards the back it is decidedly Chinese in flavor, with dragons and a small indoor waterfall that flows into a fish-filled pool. Towards the front is a somewhat more traditionally styled bar with a mural of various Republican presidents up to and including Eisenhower. The prices at the Republican House are reasonable, and the staff is courteous.

Drink[edit][add listing]

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Best Western Welcome Inn, 240 E Fond Du Lac Street, +1 920 748-2821, Fax: +1 920 748-2821, [4].

Get out[edit]




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