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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Historical Essay

State Capitol Spittoon

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Ornamented bronze cuspidor (spittoon) used in the Wisconsin State Capitol, c. 1915-1955. (Museum object #1955.3600,A-B)

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.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 16th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison and mustered into service on January 31, 1862.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Oldest known surviving license plate in Wisconsin, issued to a Mount Horeb man, 1905. (Museum object #1966.493.1)

Historical Essay

The Civil War Home Front

How the Women of Wisconsin Helped Win the War

Discover how women on the Wisconsin home front helped win the Civil War.

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

La Follette Casket Flag

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

United States Flag used to drape the caskets of both Robert M. La Follette, Sr. and Jr. (Museum object #1951.187)

Historical Essay

Tobacco Industry

Broef history of Wisconsin's tobacco industry.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 46th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison and mustered into service on March 2, 1865, only a few weeks before the war ended.

Historical Essay

Gay Purge of 1962

Learn about the Gay Purge of 1962 that took place at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
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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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