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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How the Natives Lost Their Land

Learn about the many treaties between the United States government and native tribes.

A Plot of Land Becomes a City

Discover how Wisconsin went from a small part of a territory to a capital city.

Historical Essay

Civil War Loyalty Flag

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

20-star United States Flag used in initiation ceremonies to the Union League, where members swore to protect the Union and its values, Prairie du Chien, Wi

Confederacy President's Experience in Wisconsin

Discover the history of Confederacy president Jefferson Davis in Wisconsin

Historical Essay

The War of 1812

Wisconsin's Involvement with the war on the French, British and Natives

Learn how the British relinquished control of Wisconsin and Americans took over the region's fur trade during the war of 1812.

Historical Essay

Early U.S. Settlement

Military Outposts in Wisconsin

Read how American forts were established and settlement increased in Wisconsin after the War of 1812.

From Slave to Healer

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

Historical Essay

Lice Comb from Fort Crawford

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Bone lice comb from site of first Fort Crawford in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, 1816-1829. (Museum object #1997.62.11941)

Historical Essay

Petersylvania, Wisconsin

A Bizarre Story of Land Prospecting Gone Awry

Read the amazing story of a man who watched his potential 10,000-square-mile northern Wisconsin empire disappear into thin air.

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?
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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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