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A simple frame schoolhouse, built in 1850, holds a powerful history. In the Little White Schoolhouse a decision was made by a small group of Ripon citizens that changed the future of our nation forever. The Little White Schoolhouse tells an intriguing story of how the Republican Party came to be. These Ripon citizens voted to form and become members of a new political party called “Republican.” The birth of the Republican Party brought a dedicated following of individuals who pledged to organize together and fight against the spread of slavery. Today you can enjoy tours through this historic building while enjoying the history behind it.
With a packed gravel base, the Northwestern Trail is an ideal walking and biking trail. The trail begins at the Public Library and extends 3.5 miles to the west. A great trail for running, walking and hiking alike. You can expect to experience lush vegetation and a variety of wildlife along the way. Rabbits, chipmunks and gophers are plentiful. Keep your eyes open for the deer, turkeys, woodchucks and foxes! Also, the Ripon College Conservancy is located in the back of Rodman Center for the Arts. The trails wind through wetland areas and connects with South Woods Crystal Creek. Along the trail you will see a mesic prairie, an oak savanna, and a glacial moraine.
The serene campus of Ripon College, a fine, private liberal arts school, is just west of the business district. In 1851, David Mapes and a group of townspeople founded the college on top of the hill, chartered on January 29, 1851 as Brockway College. In 1864 the name was changed to Ripon College. The campus stands prominently on top of the hill, with 22 noble buildings and beautifully landscaped courtyards, seldom surpassed by any other college campus in the country. Experience Ripon’s rich tradition first hand by attending unique festivals or attractions. After visiting our community, we know you’ll agree – there’s no place like this place, any plac