Oregon Catholic Church/Holy Mother of Consolation Parsonage
Andy Van Sickle House
5539 Whalen Rd., Fitchburg, WI
The history of the Oregon Catholic Parsonage/Van Sickle House begins in 1886 when the congregation of St. Mary’s Catholic church vacated its original location on what is now Highway M in Fitchburg to the village of Oregon. In 1900 a parsonage was erected near the church. A 1912 photograph shows the church with the parsonage in the background. The structure of the parsonage is consistent with the core structure of the Van Sickle house. About 1925 the name of the church was changed to Holy Mother of Consolation. Over the years additions were made to the parsonage giving it 13 rooms, a long stately porch and a widow’s walk on top if its roof.
In 1960 the church burned down and a new church was built and dedicated in 1961. The parsonage was sold in 1963 for $1,000 and moved to its current location on Whalen Road in Fitchburg. The moving cost was $3,000 due to the very large undertaking with significant logistic problems including having to go under an overpass bridge. Getting the large house under the bridge was solved by cutting off a bay window with a chainsaw.
There have been several owners of the house since it was moved to 5539 Whalen Road in Fitchburg. One of these owners was Andy Van Sickle for which the house gets one of its names.