Contact: Kara O’Keeffe
Reedsburg, Wis. – The Wisconsin Historical Society placed the Freda Meyers Nishan Memorial Chapel in Reedsburg, Sauk County on the State Register of Historic Places on February 15, 2019.
The Freda Meyers Nishan Memorial Chapel is a beautiful example of the Late Gothic Revival style. The chapel was designed by architect Leigh Hunt of Milwaukee, WI, and built by Friede Brothers of Reedsburg, WI, and completed in 1940. The walls of the chapel are of sandstone that was hand cut near Richland Center, WI, and the limestone foundation walls were cut from a quarry located about 150’ south of the existing chapel site. The Chapel interior is entirely original, having stained wood finishes, numerous stained glass windows, and lovely pendent light fixtures hang from the ceiling.
Reedsburg resident and philanthropist, Freda Meyers Nishan, is responsible for the construction of this beautiful chapel. Ms. Nishan had noted the hardship endured, especially the elderly, of those people who stood out in inclement weather during a funeral service. It was her desire that a chapel be built for the people of Reedsburg, to be used for holding services, and as a receiving vault for those who died during the winter when the frozen ground made burials difficult. In 1938, she left a gift to the Greenwood Cemetery Association (who still maintains ownership) for the construction of a chapel to be used by any person of any denomination, for memorials, or other special events including weddings.
The State Register is Wisconsin’s official list of state properties determined to be significant to Wisconsin’s heritage. The State Historic Preservation Office at the Wisconsin Historical Society administers both the State Register and National Register in Wisconsin.
To learn more about the State and National Register programs in Wisconsin, visit www.wisconsinhistory.org.