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

Fugitive Slave Collar

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Iron collar removed from a fugitive slave by Wisconsin soldiers in 1862. (Museum object #1961.73)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Appointment book made of ivory, used by Wisconsin politician and businessman Cassius Fairchild of Madison, WI, during the 1850s. (Museum object #1971.19)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Plaque commemorating the passage of the 1915 Seaman's Act. (Museum object #1942.530)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Portrait of Lucius Fairchild by John Singer Sargent, 1887. (Museum object #1942.305)

Historical Essay

Arndt Vest

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Vest worn by Charles C.P. Arndt when he was shot on the floor of the Wisconsin Territorial Legislature, 1842. (Museum object #1963.300)

Historical Essay

Governor Dreyfus's Red Vest

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Red velveteen vest worn by Wisconsin Governor Lee Sherman Dreyfus, c. 1975. (Museum object #1982.450.15)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Inauguration gown worn by Wisconsin First Lady Sue Ann Thompson at her first inauguration ball, 1987. (Museum object #2003.61.1a-b)

Learn how Robert La Follette and the Progressive Movement reformed state government and the Republican Party in Wisconsin.

Get to know Isaac P. Walker, the first Wisconsin resident to be a presidential candidate contender in 1850.

Read how Robert La Follette, the Wisconsin Republican Party and the Progressive Movement reformed state government in the early 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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