The Cheese House

The cheese house was built in the early 1870s by Adam Hartman and his son Daniel from Switzerland who first settled in Wayne County, Ohio. In the late 1800s there was no refrigeration to keep milk fresh, so neighbors brought their leftover milk to the cheese house. Cheese was a staple food often eaten at every meal, so 50 to 60 pounds of cheese was made each day, 7 days a week.

In our cheese house, we have original cheese molds that were used to produce either wheel cheese, brick cheese, or longhorn cheese. As the cheese was pressed by a 1500 pound pressing beam, all the whey was removed and placed in the storage room. Each day for several days it was rubbed with salt or a cloth saturated with salt water to keep it from molding. The storage room is made with tongue and groove boards that carefully fit into each other to produce a fly free environment of a fairly constant temperature.

Many thanks to Martin Kipfer for his gracious contribution of the cheese house. The building was moved to Swiss Heritage Village in 1990 from its original site near Vera Cruz, Indiana.

The Cheese House at Work