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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Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Army jacket decorated with Native American beadwork worn by Chief Simon Onanguisse Kahquados of the Forest County Potawatomi. (Museum object #1943.330)

A Brief Introduction

A brief history of the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin. Visit the links to learn more about Menominee history, culture and community.

Historical Essay

Frontier Clay Pipe Fragment

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Clay pipe bowl found at Sheard Road site, Racine County, Wisconsin. (Museum object #1998.236.249)

A Brief Introduction

Read about the Stockbridge-Munsee community in Wisconsin and learn more through links to the band's website and to visual materials in our collections.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Native American courting flute carved by Louis Webster, of Menominee, Stockbridge, Potawatomi and Oneida descent, 1994. (Museum object #1996.118.93)

Historical Essay

First Peoples

Learn about the Paleo-Indians who first inhabited the Wisconsin territory and the archaeological excavations that have revealed their culture.

Evidence of First Feasts

Take a look at some first hand accounts of the ways Native Americans of Wisconsin celebrated their own Thanksgiving ceremonies.

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.

Historical Essay

Oneota Ceramic Vessel

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Decorated shell-tempered pot from the OT site (47-LC-0262), 1500-1625. (Museum object #1995.218.39)

Read about Wisconsin's Indian tribes and their changing legal status throughout the 20th century.
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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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