Collage of historical images.

Wisconsin History Essays

Learn something new about the past and gain a deeper understanding of your world. Hundreds of essays tell the stories of the people, places and events that are Wisconsin history.

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Search by keyword below to find information on Wisconsin's history.

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Argument and an Unpopular Choice

Discover how Madison became the capitol city during the first Wisconsin territorial convention

Speculating on a Dream

Join cantankerous British geologist George Featherstonehaugh as he travels to Madison in 1837 and finds things not as he expected them to be.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 2nd Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison, and mustered into service on June 11, 1861.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Engine fragment from the van used in the Sterling Hall bombing, 1970. (Museum object #1994.8)

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 8th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison, mustered into service September 13, 1861, and left for St. Louis on October 12, 1861.

Historical Essay

Madison's Castle

In the late 1800s there was a castle on the shore of Lake Mendota OTHER than the Red Gym. This is that castle's mysterious story.

Historical Essay

20th Century Immigration

The History of Modern Immigration in Wisconsin

Discover the economic and cultural changes that brought new immigrants to Wisconsin in the 20th century.

The Story of Lost Bird

Discover this harrowing story that brings together a feminist pioneer and the infant her husband found in the aftermath of Wounded Knee.

Historical Essay

The Black Hawk War

A Misunderstanding Leads to Massacre

Discover how a Treaty Misunderstanding led to the Massacre of Thousands of Sauk Indians

Historical Essay

How Madison Became a City

Madison went from a small village in 1836 to being organized and governed as a city in 20 years time
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Have Questions?

If you have questions about historical research, please contact our Library Reference Services staff by phone at 608-264-6535 or by email.

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