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Learn how the Ordinance of 1787 extended government, prohibited slavery, and let to the survey of public lands northwest of the Ohio River.

Historical Essay

The War of 1812

Learn about the War of 1812 in Wisconsin when the British relinquished control over that territory and Americans took over the fur trade in the region.

Historical Essay

Madison's First Thanksgiving

The Power of the Pumpkin

Read the story of the first Thanksgiving celebrated in Madison.

Read about the creation of the Wisconsin territory, the formation of a territorial government, and the move of the capital from Belmont to Madison.

A Wisconsin Civil War Story

Learn about the origin, and the many spellings and erronious meanings of Wisconsin

The Virgin Mary Appears to an Illiterate Peasant Girl

Learn about the first and only manifestation of the Virgin Mary in the United States near Green Bay, confirmed by the Vatican.

Read about Earth Day's founder, Gaylord Nelson, a Wisconsin senator and early environmentalist.

Read about the fur trade conducted with the Wisconsin Indians over two centuries by first the French, then the British, and finally the Americans.

Influential Early Wisconsin Settlers

Historical Essay

Doty, James Duane, 1799-1865

Read a biographical account of the governor of the Wisconsin territory who was largely responsible for the selection of Madison as Wisconsin's capital.

Historical Essay

Lombardi, Vince, 1913-1970

Legendary Green Bay Packers Coach

Read about the "Coach of the Century" and his preeminent role in leading the Green Bay Packers to many substantial victories.

Learn about the canal era and the use of steamboats on Wisconsin waterways and lakes in the 19-th century.

A Historical Look at Service Stations

Photographs of Wisconsin gas stations portray the development of service station architecture.

Learn about the first extreme winters in Wisconsin suffered by explorers and settlers in the 17th through 19th centuries, with links to other articles

Promotions on Paper, 1850s-1975

Custom-designed letterheads were a universal way of proclaiming who you were. Historical letterheads are prime examples of early branding.

Historical Essay

Campers' Wash-Up Kit

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Wash-Up Kit made by the Bay West Company, Green Bay. Distributed by the Yankee Paper and Specialty Co. of Menasha in the 1920s. (Museum object #1998.6.2)

A Short History of Wisconsin

View these 19th-century panoramic, detailed maps of Wisconsin communities.

Historical Essay

The Founding of Major Cities

Read how land speculation and the development of transportation spurred settlement in 19th-century Wisconsin, leading to the rise of larger cities.
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