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See a list of historical highlights from Wisconsin history

Photograph

Aqua Form

Date:  date unknown

Description: Faye Geise, wearing a bikini, is sitting on a lawn and posing with Aqua Form, a local invention.

Date: 1955 

Description: Unidentified man wearing a suit and a bow tie is standing on a pontoon of the "Monona-Mobile" (pontoon car) and holding the tow rope. Across the lake is th...

Date:  date unknown

Description: Faye Geise, wearing a bikini, is standing outdoors and posing with Aqua Form, a local invention. She is standing on colored gravel next to a building with...

Drawing

Graph Invention

Date: 1863 ca.

Description: A sketch of a graph-making invention.

Date: 1931 

Description: Reverse side of the International Harvester reaper centennial medallion (or coin) showing the reaper in use, and the words "Centennial of the Reaper, 1891-...

Photograph

Golf Club and Tees

Date: 1947-04-28 

Description: Several patented golf tees designed to slip over the handle of a golf club. Shown are two different types of two-pronged tees, a three-pronged tee, a singl...

Date: 1909 ca.

Description: Five men pose with the first successful four-wheel drive vehicle, which was made in Clintonville in 1909. The inventor, Otto Zachow, is the man seated at t...

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Warner "Auto-Meter," Model K-2, made by the Warner Instrument Company of Beloit, Wisconsin, c. 1906-1910. (Museum object #1989.81.1)

Drawing

Chair Invention

Date: 1863 ca.

Description: A sketch of a chair invention by John Muir.

Photograph

Steel Guitar Ace

Date:  date unknown

Description: Jack Penewell of Madison, originator of the twelve string Hawaiian guitar (or so his business card says), with another musician tentatively identified as T...

Date: 1863 ca.

Description: A sketch of pulleys on crankshafts.

Date: 1947-03-13 

Description: Sheldon Wengel and Howard La Court demonstrating a photographer's remote flash with a woman model.

Date: 1900 ca.

Description: Cigar box label with portraits of inventors Thomas Edison, Eli Whitney, Robert Fulton, Cyrus McCormick, Richard March Hoe. Around the edges are illustratio...

Date: 1863 ca.

Description: A sketch of mechanical parts for an invention.

Date:  date unknown

Description: Two barefoot men are standing and looking at a dilapidated outhouse, which has a sliding board for a seat extending out of the sides of the outhouse. The b...

Date: 1931-10-19 

Description: Edison kinetascope, patented in 1897, one of the first motion picture projectors invented by Thomas A. Edison. It is hand cranked and chain driven.

Drawing

Rhumkorff Coils

Date:  date unknown

Description: Rendering of a Thordarson Electical Manufacturing Company product. Chester Thordarson was a Chicago inventor and manufacturer of electical apparatus, famo...

Date: 1930 ca.

Description: Film crew setting up a scene in which actors playing the parts of Cyrus McCormick and his slave Jo Anderson operate a replica of McCormick's reaper of 183...

Photograph

Carhart Automobile

Date: 1873 

Description: Automobile made by J. Wesley Carhart, Methodist minister of Racine, later of Oshkosh, Maryland and Texas. The vehicle was dismantled and the engine used to...

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