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3244 Atwood Avenue


Built in 1905-06, this large cream brick building housed the United States Sugar Company factory. High tariffs at the turn of the century made foreign cane sugar so expensive that it became profitable to produce sugar from beets. The Company's first president was Magnus Swenson, the University of Wisconsin researcher who had become a multi-millionaire from his sugar processing and other inventions. In its heyday, the factory, one of nine in the state, employed 350 men, working around the clock, from October to January. In one year, the factory processed 24,000 rail carloads of beets, supplied by farmers within a 100 mile radius, into 15 million pounds of sugar.

In 1929, the facility was purchased by agricultural entrepreneur, James R. Garver and repurposed as a commercial feed mill.  Garver Feed and Supply Company operated for many years before closing in 1997.  The site, now owned by the city of Madison, is vacant pending plans for renovation and development. 

Wisconsin Historical Images ID#11038

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