Waukesha County believes in preserving significant representations of the City of Waukesha’s History.
Currently, the county has reached an agreement with the Wisconsin Historical Society to preserve and perpetuate the history of the Moor Downs property while allowing for demolition of the structure. The agreement includes hiring a historian that specializes in historical photography to document the remaining structures in imagery and writing. The county will create and maintain a website that utilizes that information to memorialize the property. The county will also erect a historical marker that adheres to National Historical Marker guidelines. This information is outlined in the agreement the county has made with the State Historical Society.
That agreement is in addition to past preservation efforts, which include investing hundreds of thousands of dollars to preserve Moor Downs Golf Course as a functioning public course, the reconstruction of the Moor Downs Clubhouse building on the golf course, and donations of significant items to the Waukesha Historical Society.
No. Nothing historic remains in the vacant building that used to house the Waukesha County Health and Human Services Building. If you were to step inside the building today, it would look no different than any other office building with fluorescent lighting, drop ceilings, drywall and cubicles. That’s because after the Moor Mud Baths closed in 1961, the building underwent many modern renovations to be repurposed as a seminary in 1962 and then as an office building in 1972. By the time the building was vacated in 2014, it had undergone 50 years of renovations to allow it to accommodate students, classrooms, and offices.
Waukesha County has been able to reach an agreement with the Wisconsin Historical Society that will preserve and perpetuate the property’s historical narrative, in accordance with state and federal requirements, while allowing for demolition of the structure. The agreement details the steps the County will take to document the history of the former resort through a website, a commemorative marker, photographs and a historical display.
The Landmarks Commission designated the entire Moor Downs property as a “relatively intact example of a resort from Springs Era.” However, the footprint of the property and all of its structures were significantly altered before the historic designation was given.