|McCarthy House 1975|
That happened in 1843, and the race was won by Dennis J. McCarthy who had settled on land just east of Cooksville near Caledonia Springs but had not yet formally claimed or registered it.
The cause of the” race” was an incidence of “claim jumping.” In 1843, McCarthy settled in Section 9 of the Porter Township intending to establish his residency on his claim—and to be the first individual to ever own that piece of government land— but he had not yet filed the necessary papers with the U.S. Land Office. Before he could file the papers for the land, McCarthy heard that a Mr. Lyons from the nearby Town of Dunkirk intended to jump McCarthy’s claim by traveling to Milwaukee in his carriage the next day to file papers. McCarthy immediately set out on foot for the Milwaukee Land Office himself. He did not have a horse available. The race was on.