Foster & Nobody Else


Foster Township    

Clark County, Wisconsin      





Cheese & Dairy


Clark Co. WI Churches


Community Spirit


Photo Album



Clark Co. Cemeteries

Foster Homes & Families






Local History

Changing Times

Clark County



Memories & Letters


Foster Plat Maps

Clark County




Foster Locals

Clark County



Foster Schools

Clark County

Surname Contacts



Townships 25North - Range 4West & 26North - Range 4West


Foster Township is part of the 69th Assembly District of Wisconsin and is nearly centered on the western most edge of Clark County.  It was established in 1923, after being detached from Mentor township, and was named in honor of the early lumber baron and railroad developer, Nathaniel Caldwell Foster of Fairchild, Eau Claire County, WI.


N. C. Foster, was born in Owego, Tioga County, NY., January 6, 1834.  He was the sixth in a family of seven children born to Willard and Lovicea (Pickering) Foster, natives of Vermont and New York, respectively.  Willard was born March 1, 1794 in Shrewsbury, Rutland, Vermont and he followed farming and lumbering in the empire state until his death in 1881.  He'd married Lovicea at Owego, NY in 1813.  She was born to Nathaniel and Olive Pickering of Richmond, Cheshire, NH in September of 1795 and died May 26, 1873.  They were also the parents of:  Abijah; Huldah P., widow of Daniel Gaskill; Louisa, deceased wife of Jason Whittamore; Charles M.; Grace, deceased wife of Gilbert Arnold; Olive F., wife of William Sherwood. 


In 1858, Nathaniel Foster married Esther Stearn, and to them seven children were born, namely:  Gilbert A.; Edward J.; Sarah, wife of C. M. Wilson; Clara, wife of D. Duncan; Cora, Wife of George Winslow; Edward J. Willard, a student of the military school, and Grace May.  N. C. Foster was the largest lumber manufacturer and dealer in this section of the state, owning some 15,000 acres of good timber, consisting of pine and hard wood, which extended into Eau Claire and Clark counties.  His timber furnished the supply for the large mills he owned at Fairchild, which were established in 1877, at a cost of $100,000, and with additional improvements and additions in machinery, were valued at $150,000 by 1892.

This plant has a capacity of 100,000 feet of building lumber daily, besides 14,000,000 shingles and 6,000,000 lath.  In the late 1890's, a force of 200 men was employed his lumber trade which was almost exclusively retail.  He established several yards, namely, at Osseo, Eleva, and Mondovi, in Wisconsin, and at Avoca, Slayton and Heron Lake, in Minnesota, besides the retail business in the Foster/Fairchild area. He supplied the country within a radius of thirty miles.

Mr. Foster was also senior member in the firm of N. C. & E. J.  Foster, millers.  Their plant was established in 1883 as an elevator, and in 1890 there was added a buckwheat plant, which ground by a patent process, and their flour had a national reputation, their trade extending through the northwestern and southern states. 


Mr. Foster was the principal in the firm of N. C. Foster and Son, general merchants, whose store was established in 1876.  Both of these concerns had been consolidated with the lumber business, which was incorporated at the N. C. Foster Lumber Company July 1, 1891, with a capital stock of $500,000, all paid up, and with N. C. Foster, pres., E. J. Foster, vice president, and G. A. Foster, sec. and treas.  Mr. Foster endeared himself to the people in the vicinity in the opening up of the territory between Fairchild and Mondovi, by the building of the Sault Ste. Marie & Southwestern railroad.  It was commenced and completed in 1886, and built without any bonded indebtedness.  He also had a tramway, known as the Chicago, Fairchild and Eau Claire river road, upon which he transported the logs from his pineries to his mills.  These two roads had a combined length of fifty miles.  Being practically the owner of all the stock in the railroad, Mr. Foster sold it in March, 1891, to the Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis and Omaha railway company for $400,000.  Fairchild's growth was due, in a large measure, to his encouragement and assistance, and he has been considered one of the principal movers of the many enterprises of that village and Foster Township.  He was a man of energy and enterprise and his position in the financial world was one of the highest.  He was free from that reserve and haughtiness that are looked upon by the masses with ill favor; kind, hospitable and liberal, he was held in high esteem by his numerous friends and neighbors.  With the view of benefiting his surroundings and his county, he gave valuable assistance to enterprises of a public nature.

Source: Historical and Biographical Album of the Chippewa Valley, Wisconsin, 1891-1892; Pages 432-433 and Foster Family Records.





© Every submission is protected by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998.


Show your appreciation of this freely provided information by not copying it to any other site without our permission.


Become a Clark County History Buff


Report Broken Links

A site created and maintained by the Clark County History Buffs
and supported by your generous donations.


Webmasters: Leon Konieczny, Tanya Paschke,

Janet & Stan Schwarze, James W. Sternitzky,

Crystal Wendt & Al Wessel