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.

Search Within:

Search by keyword below to find information on Wisconsin's history.

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Historical Essay

Travel and Tourism

The Invention of a new Pastime

Discover how new technology helped create the tourist industry in Wisconsin in the 19th century

Hero of the Confederacy

Discover the story of Belle Boyd, the celebrity Civil War spy who died while performing in the Wisconsin Dells.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Duncan Butterfly yo-yo manufactured by the Flambeau Corporation, Baraboo, Wisconsin, 1988-1995. (Museum object #2001.83.13)

The Prairie du Sac Dam

Read about the conception and inspiration behind the dam that provides electric power to Sauk and Columbia counties. Includes links to photographs.

How One Family Helped Build the Modern Tourist Destination

Discover how Wisconsin Dells came to prominence as a Midwestern tourism institution.

Read about the desperate 1832 battle near Madison, WI, of the starving Sauk, Fox and Kickapoo Native Americans against the British and the Ho-Chunk.

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

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Landscape view of the Martin Luetscher II farmstead, Honey Creek Township, Wisconsin, c. 1875 (Museum object #2005.182.1)

Historical Essay

Frank Lloyd Wright Furniture

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Chest of drawers with mirror designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for commercial market, c. 1955. (Museum object #1995.2.2.1-2)

Historical Essay

Lumberjack Saved Union Fleet

3,000 Dam the Red River

Read this wild story about a Wisconsin Dells lumberjack applying his knowledge of dams to help Union forces escape a Confederate attack.
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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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