Collage of historic photos.

Historical Figures in Wisconsin

Learn about the lives of your favorite Wisconsin historical figures, from the famous to infamous, and their contributions to our state's history.

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Search by keyword below to find information on historical figures in Wisconsin.

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Religious Leader, Politician and Self-proclaimed Monarch

Biography of James Jesse Strang, American religious leader, politician and self-proclaimed monarch of a faction of the Latter Day Saint movement.

Historical Essay

Orson Welles, 1915-1985

Cinematic Visionary

Learn about this Wisconsin-born director, his relationship with the film industry, and his lasting legacy as a filmmaker.

Historical Essay

Best, Jacob Sr. (1786-1861)

Brewer

Biography of German brewer Jacob Best Sr., founder of the company that became Pabst Brewing.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Mexican-American War Officer

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Newspaper Editor, Philanthropist

Historical Essay

Marin, Paul, 1692-1753

French Official, Captain and Fur Trader

Biography of French Official, Captain and Fur Trader Paul Marin.

Pioneer in Home Economics

This woman served as the first female professor at Kansas State Agricultural College. Read about her role as state leader of the Home Economics Extension.

Historical Essay

Edwin Witte, 1887-1960

Father of the Social Security Act

Learn about this Wisconsin-born economist and his active role in the development of the Social Security Act.

Librarian, Lecturer, Reformer and Author

Biography of Lutie Eugenia Stearns, librarian, lecturer, reformer and author who helped establish the Wisconsin Free Library Commission.

Read this informative article about the life of the Wisconsin born author, most famous for the children's book series Little House on the Prairie.
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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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