The name Georgia O'Keeffe is recognized by art experts and novices around the world. Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, can lay claim to a significant part of the formative years of this famous artist.
Born on November 15, 1887, to Francis and Ida O'Keeffe, Georgia was part of one of the earliest Irish immigrant families to settle in the Township of Sun Prairie. The O'Keeffes arrived in 1848 and bought land adjacent to the Village of Sun Prairie.
In 1853, Georgia's grandparents, Pierce and Catherine, moved to a house on Town Hall Road. Georgia grew up north of this farm that stretched along Town Hall Road and County Highway T.
Visit the O'Keeffe Farmstead
The O'Keeffe farmstead is easily located. Just take Highway 19 east of Sun Prairie until it intersects with Town Hall Drive. Turn south (right) and follow Town Hall Road until you come to a 4-way intersection with County Highway T.
On your left is the former town hall (now a private residence), constructed in 1868. Georgia's school was located to your right on the northwest corner of the intersection.
The O'Keeffe home was located across from the school on the south side of County Highway T. Unfortunately, the family home was destroyed by fire on November 6, 1976. A historical marker has been placed at the site of the O'Keeffe home.
More About the O'Keeffe Family
Georgia's grandfather, Pierce, was a founder of Sacred Hearts of Jesus & Mary Catholic Church. Sacred Hearts Cemetery is the burial site for Georgia's father, her uncles and her paternal grandparents.
The city has recognized Georgia by placing a state historical marker near city hall, dedicating a street in her honor and creating an extensive exhibit at the historical museum.