William Alcott House

William Alcott House | Brodhead, Wis.

The House 

Built in 1891, the William Alcott House is on the corner of McNair and Tibbetts.

William Alcott House | July 2021

The Man & Family

Perhaps one of the most intriguing local stories about William Alcott (1833-1897), is that he is the uncle of Lousia May Alcott (most known as the author of Little Women). 

Lousia May Alcott

However, through my research I have yet to tie him as a relation of the also notable (Amos) Bronson Alcott

Bronson, father of  Louisa May, was a remarkable man. He was a prominent social reformer, religious leader, founder of Transcendentalism, leading slavery abolitionist, women's rights advocate, founder of a vegan community, as well as an architect, artist, and author. Additionally, he famously entertained close friends which included Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau.

Although I have yet to find a direct connection in documented lineage, William's father, Rev. Denison Alcott (1801-1883), was born in New Haven, Connecticut.  Bronson (Louisa May's father) too was born in New Haven, Connecticut ... so there is high probability that William is a blood relative of Louisa May.

Bronson Alcott

William Alcott was born in 1833, and married his first wife, Olive Ann Palmer, in 1861. His second wife was Angie A. Lincoln, whom he married in 1891 the same year as their home.

According to the 1880 census, William's identified occupation was Farmer. Based on probate records, William had not owned real estate at the time of his death. It is said that he sold the house to John Bessert, a tavern and pool hall owner who used the house as a rental property investment.

William's children were Minnie O. Alcott Wolfe and Anna Maria Alcott Palmer.

Probate records show that William had a sizable loan from the Bank of Brodhead taken in March of 1891, presumably tied to building the house. The loan remained unpaid, and was unable to be collected upon after his death.

William Alcott House | July 2021