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Discover how The Wisconsin Dells came to prominence as a Midwestern tourism institution.

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

Historical Essay

Stage Coach Sleigh Bells

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Sleigh bells used for stage runs and recreational trips in Sauk County, Wisconsin during the 1870s. (Museum object #1967.341.1)

Historical Essay

Frank Lloyd Wright Furniture

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Chest of drawers with mirror designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for commercial market, c. 1955. (Museum object #1995.2.2.1-2)

Learn about the life and career of self-proclaimed 'Photo Artist' from Baraboo who had a vast range of photographic abilities.

Architectural photographs of the restored opera houses of Wisconsin.

Read about the life of this influential Wisconsonite and his contributions to the field of architecture. Article includes links to many primary sources.

A Wisconsin Civil War Story

Read about how a lieutenant outwitted Confederate soldiers after he was captured in the fog near Petersburg, Virginia

A Wisconsin Civil War Story

Discover Belle Boyd, the celebrity Civil War spy who died while performing in The Wisconsin Dells.

Frank Lloyd Wright's Wisconsin Home

Learn about he home of architect Frank Lloyd Wright and view rare photographs of the building he designed and redesigned during his lifetime.

Historical Essay

The Birth of Lake Delton

Learn about the rise of Wisconsin Dells tourism, and read about the creation and collapse of the manmade river it was founded on. Links to pictures.

Photographs of Public Libraries in Wisconsin

Learn about how the Wisconsin Free Library Commission helped to establish and improve free public libraries in Wisconsin.

Historical Essay

Wonder Spot "Book" Sign

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Wonder Spot "Book" sign that greeted thousands of visitors to the beloved Wonder Spot attraction in the Wisconsin Dells area, c. 1990. (Museum Object #2007

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Landscape view of the Martin Luetscher II farmstead, Honey Creek Township, Wisconsin, c. 1875 (Museum object #2005.182.1)

An Inventive and Imaginative Photographer

Learn about H.H. Bennett, the 19th-century photographer of Wisconsin Dells landscapes.

Historical Essay

Asbestos Baby Bottle Warmer

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Automobile baby bottle warmer lined with asbestos, made by the Hankscraft Company, Reedsburg, Wisconsin, c. 1955. (Museum object #1979.316.21)

Harry Ellsworth Cole

Cole's photographs show scenic views of the Dells and Devil's Lake area as well as geological features throughout Sauk County.

Historical Essay

Shot Tower Lead-Melting Bowl

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Lead-melting bowl used at the Wisconsin Shot Company Shot Tower, Helena, Wisconsin, c. 1833. (Museum object #1992.12)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Eagle feather dance staff used at 1933 World's Fair by Ho-Chunk dancers from the Wisconsin Dells. (Museum object #2001.49.1)
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