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Historical Essay

Women's History in Wisconsin

Provides a comprehensive summary of women's history in Wisconsin and contains primary sources from the 16th century to the early 21st century.

Historical Essay

Madison's Fur Traders

The First White Men in Madison

The first white residents of Madison were fur traders Wallace Rowan, Olivier Ammel and Michel St. Cyr.

A Short History of Wisconsin

Historical Essay

Cadotte, Michael, 1764-1837

Pioneer Fur Trader

Brief biography of pioneer fur trader Michael Cadotte.

When the Beaver was King

Discover how beavers transformed Wisconsin's economy in the 1650s for the next two centuries.

French Fur Trader

Learn about one of the first French fur traders to visit Wisconsin. Read about his experiences with Indian tribes and his exploration of the countryside.

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

Historical Essay

Porlier, Jacques 1765-1839

Fur Trader and Chief Justice

Biography of fur trader and chief justice of the Brown County Court Jacques Porlier.

Historical Essay

Brisbois, Michael 1760-1837

Fur Trader and Settler

Biography of French-Canadian fur trader Michel Brisbois, who founded the first permanent white settlement in Prairie du Chien.

How the French Began the Fur Trade

Discover how early French explorers mapped Wisconsin and began the state's fur trade.

An Old Man's Tall Tale

Wisconsin pioneer Joseph Crelie was said to be 139 years old when he was exhibited to spectators in 1864. But how old was he really?

Fur Trader, Merchant, Judge and Territorial Legislator

Biography of fur trader, merchant, judge and territorial legislator James Henry Lockwood.

Fur Trader and Explorer

Brief biography of Médard Chouart des Groseilliers who was a fur trader and explorer.

Historical Essay

Reaume, Charles 1752-1821


Brief biography of legendary judge Charles Reaume.

Historical Essay

De Langlade Fur Trade Pouch

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Quilled buckskin pouch used by Charles de Langlade to carry his fur trade papers in northern Wisconsin, mid to late 1700s. (Museum object #1955.186)

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

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

A Priest Follows Another Priest's 300-Year-Old Path to Death

Learn how Rev. A. A. A. Schmirler traced the path Fr. Rene Menard took in 1661 down northern Wisconsin's rivers to the likely spot of his death.

Historical Essay

Appleton, Wisconsin

Outagamie County

Discover the history of Appleton, Wisconsin
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