The Brown County Beekeepers Association, located in Green Bay, Wisconsin, is a 501(c)3 non profit group and any donations are tax deductible to the full extent of the law.
We are dedicated to promoting sustainable, responsible and healthy beekeeping practices in Northeastern Wisconsin for both experienced and first time beekeepers. We strive to create a fun environment where learning opportunities exist for association members and the general public.
The club has a long, rich history supporting beekeepers in the Green Bay and surrounding area. The year was 1918, during a pandemic, 300 beekeepers of Brown County organized their first Brown County Beekeepers meeting December 21, 1918. The stated purpose of “working together in ordering equipment and supplies to enable all to get help from the state apiary inspection service.” Foulbrood was noted to be a serious problem. Another goal was to get local honey on many more tables in the community. At the first meeting they proposed a 3-day bee school to be presented by Professors from the University of Wisconsin.
An article in the Green Bay Press Gazette in 1918 featuring the bee club was titled “County Bee Men”. On the same page was an article talking about the Spanish Flu Pandemic in which Appleton was threatening to close the entire city unless people adhered closely to instructions to refrain from large public meetings during this period of illness.
The original officers of the club include: Miss Jennie Matzke of DePere who was named the first President of the Association of bee men! George Miller of Green Bay VP, Frank Mongin of Allouez Secretary/Treasurer. In February 1919 a Professor McMurray of the University of Wisconsin stated that Brown County was one of the best natural localities for honey production in the country and the Club responded with a plan to boom Brown County Honey Products. About 125 members met for an annual banquet to plan the use of uniform labeling and packing the crop.The first bee school was held October 13,1920 at the courthouse with Professor McMurray as the presenter. As it turned out the proposed 3 day class was a 1-day class with topics: young queens, fall brood rearing, winter stores, winter conditions, quietness, even temperature, warm cellars, outdoor packing and general discussion with questions.
In August of 1921 Mr. Frank Mongin of Allouez discussed how his hobby, which started with 2 hives, after a couple of years grew into one of the “largest farms” in the county with 126 hives in Allouez, Greenleaf, Brussels and Kewaunee. He notes that to properly operate an apiary “it is necessary to do a great deal of studying and inform yourself on every point.” In 1921 there were between 2500-3000 colonies in the county and it was estimated that the number would double within a year.The number of active members was 40 and they were energetically preaching the gospel of pure honey and promoting the interest of beekeepers.