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

Old Abe and the Iron Brigade

Wisconsin in the Civil War

Discover how a pet eagle named Old Abe helped Wisconsin serve the Union in the Civil War

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Appointment book made of ivory, used by Wisconsin politician and businessman Cassius Fairchild of Madison, WI, during the 1850s. (Museum object #1971.19)

Historical Essay

'Forward' Statue

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

'Forward' statue by Wisconsin artist Jean Pond Miner, 1893. (Museum object #1998.1.1)

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)

A New Vision for the United States

Discover how a few key political issues in the 1850s gave birth to the Republican Party

Historical Essay

British Open Golf Glove

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Golf glove worn by Sherri Steinhauer of Madison, Wisconsin to win the 2006 Weetabix Women's British Open, August 3-6, 2006. (Museum object #2007.81.2)

Historical Essay

Farming and Industry

How a Disaster Made Wisconsin the Dairy State

Discover how Wisconsin became the nation's leader in wheat long before it was renowned for dairy, and the disaster that made it all possible.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Copy of Gilbert Stuart's portrait of George Washington painted by Thomas Sully, 1854. (Museum object #1942.506)

Discover historical details and explore our online collections related to Madison, Wisconsin.

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.
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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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