Born in 1836 in Canton Berne, Switzerland, where he learned cheese making, Nickolaus Gerber immigrated to New York and founded that state's first Limburger cheese factory.
After hearing reports of successful dairy cattle-raising in Green County, Wisconsin, Gerber moved to this area.
In 1868 Nickolaus Gerber established the first Limburger cheese factory in Green County on the Albrecht Baebler farm in Section 33, Town of New Glarus. A year later, he started the first Swiss cheese factory on the Dietrich Freitag farm in Section 1, Town of Washington. Both sites are within six miles of this marker.
Mr. Gerber is credited with forming the cooperative farmer-factory system and operated six such factories in the area.
His success was attributed to his knowledge of cheese making combined with his expertise of cheese marketing.
After 130 years, Green County's Limburger cheese factory remains the last operating in the United States. Mr. Gerber's early efforts helped bring recognition to this area as a major Swiss cheese marketing and distribution center. He is also remembered as one of the founders of Green County Cheese Days.