Archaeology, WIS 57,
and the Door Peninsula

Project Overview

In 1992, personnel from the Archaeological Research Laboratory at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) entered into a contract with WisDOT to conduct archaeological investigations related to the proposed reconstruction of WIS 57 in Brown, Kewaunee, and Door Counties, Wisconsin. In 1997, the Archaeology Research Laboratory contract program was formally changed to Historic Resource Management Services (HRMS). The project began approximately one mile north of the WIS 54/57 interchange and continues to the WIS 42 intersection, a distance of 27.5 miles. The existing WIS 57 was a two-lane roadway that passes through the communities of Dyckesville, Namur, and Brussels.

During the 1992-2005 field seasons, crews from UWM conducted archaeological investigations on over 107 archaeological sites within WisDOT study corridors. In general, proposed highway designs required a 600 ft wide survey corridor paralleling existing WIS 57 alignments. At certain locales, corridors were widened to approximately 1200 feet and alternates were added to account for interchanges, avoid sensitive locales, and bypass existing urban areas.

UWM personnel also conducted site evaluations of over 78 archaeological sites and data recovery of six sites. Between 1999 and 2003, personnel from Great Lakes Archaeological Research Center, Inc., later Marquette University's Center for Archaeological Research (CAR), aided in site evaluations and data recovery of an additional cluster of sites at Fabry Creek. Altogether, a total of seven archaeological sites were subjected to data recovery. Archaeological investigations along the WIS 57 corridor has provided greater insight into the prehistoric and historic use of the Door Peninsula landscape through time.