Novelist and Playwright, April 17, 1897-December 7, 1975
Thornton Nevin Wilder was born in Madison, Wisconsin on April 17, 1897. His father, Amos P. Wilder, brought his family to Madison when he became the owner and editor of the Wisconsin State Journal in 1894. The Wilders were members of the First Congregational Church.
The family lived most of the year in a cottage they called "Wilderness" on the shores of Lake Mendota in what is now Maple Bluff. During the winters they rented apartments in downtown Madison.
- Until the summer of 1895, the family lived with artist James Reeves Stuart and his wife Theodora
- Lived with accountant Charles W. and Samantha Askew at 321 S. Henry Street, where Amos was born
- Lived with Professor Fletcher A. Parker at 14 W. Gilman Street
- In 1897, they lived at Professor Alexander Kerr's home, 140 Langdon Street; Thornton was born
- Lived at a cottage of Mrs. Phillis Frawler, 25 Mendota Court
- From 1899 until May, 1905, 211 W. Gilman Street
Thornton Wilder became a Pulitzer Prize winning novelist (The Bridge of San Luis Rey) and playwright (Our Town and The Skin of Our Teeth). He wrote several other novels and plays including The Matchmaker which is the basis for the musical Hello Dolly!
Historic Madison: Journal of the Four Lake Region, Vol. XIV: 1997, p. 50-57