Many people do not realize that there were once two communities which merged to
become the City of Ripon. The first community began as the Wisconsin Phalanx when
19 men and a boy, along with leader Warren Chase, arrived on May 27, 1844. They had
come from Southport (now Kenosha) and settled in a valley along Crystal Creek on the
western side of present day Ripon. Founded on the utopian principles of Frenchman
Charles Fourier as espoused by Albert Brisbane of New York, the settlement attempted
to address society’s problems through communal living. Named Ceresco after Ceres,
goddess of agriculture, it was also referred to as the Domain.