About This Place
Valders is a village in Manitowoc County, Wisconsin, United States. The population was 948 at the 2000 census.
The village is known within the state for its dolomitic limestone quarry, which produces building rock, harbor rock and gravel (and a minimal though sub-standard amount of marble). Gray Woodfordian Drift soil is also described as Valderan Drift. The Valders lobe glacial advance was named after the village.
Valders was settled in the 1850s by immigrants from the Valdres mountainous region of Norway. The largest town in Valdres is Fagernes, but many immigrants arriving in Wisconsin came from the valleys of Vestre Slidre and Øystre Slidre, when hunger (sult) in these rocky hillside farms was far from unheard of. Valders did not really develop as a village until the arrival of the railroad in 1896, the traditional year of its founding. It was incorporated as a village under Wisconsin law in 1921, with William F. Christel as the first village president. As the village was founded by Norwegians, it was natural that the first churches were Lutheran: Valders Lutheran parish, Our Savior Lutheran parish, and Gjerpin Lutheran parish. These were later combined into Faith Lutheran parish (ELCA). There is also a small Protestant Conference parish. After the arrival of the railroad, many German settlers moved in who were primarily Catholic, but no parish was developed for them. To this day, there is still a significant population of Catholics, including most of the area farmers, who worship at St. Gregory in St. Nazianz to the south, St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception in Clarks Mills to the north (presently joined to St. Michael in Whitelaw), or St. Thomas the Apostle in Newton to the east.