History of Omro


The site of the present day City of Omro was originally Winnebago Indian territory when it was first visited by French explorers in 1639. Eventually, a fur-trading post was begun here, one early resident being Charles Omereau, a French trader and blacksmith who gave his name to the future city.  Omro's location on the Fox River gave it two early advantages: a position on one of the few natural transportation and communications routes of the time, and abundant water for industrial use.  

The first modern settler came here in 1847.  The Village was incorporated in 1928 and the city charter was filed at the state on May 19, 1944.  The population at the time of signing was 1401.  By 1880, Omro was a stop on the railroad line and was home to the county fairgrounds, several mills, a glass factory, carriage factories, several machine works, and had more than 2,000 inhabitants.  Eventually though, most of the manufacturing activities in Omro either relocated to nearby Oshkosh or faded away.  

By the turn of the century, Omro had become a quiet trading center for the surrounding countryside.  Omro started a revitalization process in 1986, and has seen renewed growth.  Through projects such as the historic walking tour, the Scott park pavilion project, acceptance into the Main Street Program and the designation of a historic downtown district, Omro is paying homage to its past even as it builds for the future.