The year 2015 marks the 175th anniversary of the Cooks settling in northwestern Rock County, and 2017 will commemorate the 175th anniversary of the official platting of their Village of Cooksville.
|The Cook House (1842) today|
The Cooks arrived in the Wisconsin Territory on June 25, 1840. The federal census taker that year counted noses at John Cook’s new little log cabin, revealing the following living there: himself, a bachelor; his younger brother Daniel Cook; Daniel’s wife Elizabeth, and their young daughter Rhoda aged two. (Sometime after 1840 John Cook married his wife Nancy.)
Soon, in 1842, John Cook officially platted his village of Cooksville near the Bad Fish Creek. (The words eventually flowed together into “Badfish”; the creek was also known as “Waucoma” at the time.) Cook must have believed that the growing westward movement in America justified establishing an official settlement with building lots for sale, probably hoping to profit from the increased migration from New England, New York and the British Isles to the newly opened land.