Our Tour Guides

The Forest Home Historic Preservation Association has added three new tours for the 2017 season that expand our history program. We are fortunate to have dedicated tour guides who bring extensive knowledge to our public events.

Margaret Berres – Margaret has a strong background in Civil War history and has been active in helping to restore veteran’s grave markers. She has walked the grounds at Forest Home Cemetery numerous times in search of veteran history. Margaret is a retired educator having spent 39 years with the Greendale Public Schools. She has developed a strong sense of Milwaukee history with her efforts to find all the Civil War Veterans buried at Forest Home, (over 1,000 of them.) She sees her work as a way to honor these Civil War Veterans.

Robert Giese – Is a Milwaukee historian who has given tours in Milwaukee for many years. He has written extensively about Milwaukee, including the brewing families, in which most of them reside at Forest Home. He also developed a Mayors Tour. Forest Home Cemetery is the final resting place to 27 of Milwaukee’s 38 deceased mayors including two of Milwaukee’s Founders.

Paul Haubrich – Paul is past President of the Forest Home Historic Preservation Association and has served on the Forest Home Cemetery Board of Directors for nearly 20 years. He developed the initial tours, starting in 2005, and has expanded the series to include a variety of diverse topics including Cemetery Art and Symbolism and the ever-popular Milwaukee History Tour. If you are interested in the series of tours, the Milwaukee History Tour is recommended for your initial walk at Forest Home Cemetery.

Tom Ludka – Tom is the retired Veteran’s Affairs Coordinator for Waukesha County and a Civil War history buff. He has partnered with Margaret Berres to do outstanding research to find the graves and stories of Civil War Veterans from Southeast Wisconsin and especially those buried at Forest Home. He sees this effort as a way to honor those service men and women who came before and insuring that they are not forgotten.

Sally Merrell – The daughter of a history teacher, Sally Merrell remembers visiting forts and battlegrounds on family vacations. Taking her interest in History and combining it with her love of outdoors, parks, storytelling and Milwaukee, Sally shares the stories of the people who have our streets and parks named after them and how they helped shape our city. Now that Sally is partially retired after practicing estate planning and law for over 35 years, she is excited to be a tour guide at Forest Home Cemetery.

Anita Pietrykowski – Anita's particular interest is to research and share the stories of the many remarkable women buried at Forest Home Cemetery from the time of the founding of Milwaukee to modern day through re-enactments, in-depth talks, PowerPoint presentations and tours.  She also offers unique tours that focus on the abolitionist movement in Milwaukee and on the suffragists buried at the Cemetery.  Now retired, Anita worked as a teacher and administrator for Milwaukee Public Schools.