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

The Birth of Lake Delton

Learn about the rise of Wisconsin Dells tourism, and read about the creation and collapse of the man-made river it was founded on.

From Slave to Healer

Learn about Mary Ann Menard, Wisconsin's first doctor.

Historical Essay

The First Madison Lodgings

From Under a Tree to Madison's Most Popular Lodge

Discover the story surrounding the planning and construction of the first building erected in Madison.

Learn about the various visits Presidents have made to Wisconsin's Capitol city!

Historical Essay

Valentine's Callers

The Remarkable History of the Telephone

Learn how Wisconsin resident Richard Valentine's invention would change the world

Historical Essay

The Trial of Chief Oshkosh

The Clash of U.S Law and Indian Legal Tradition

Learn how the trial of Menominee Chief Oshkosh, one of the most famous in Wisconsin history, pitted Indian traditional justice against white man's law.

Read the story of Madison's first and most beloved drunkard, Pinneo.

From Sacred Calumets to Ashtrays

Discover the important role that tobacco and the Peace Pipe have played throughout Wisconsin's history.

Historical Essay

Louise Williams

First Woman Notary Public

Discover the story of Wisconsin's first woman notary public Louise Williams who provided legal counsel for southern Wisconsin after the Civil War.

Historical Essay

More Bank Failures (1857)

Discover the effects that the Panic of 1857 had on La Crosse.
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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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