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.


A New Vision for the United States

Discover how a few key political issues in the 1850s gave birth to the Republican Party

Historical Essay

1857 Promenade Dress

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Promenade dress worn by Hannah Billinghurst of Juneau, Wisconsin, 1857. (Museum object #1955.1449,A)

A Wisconsin Civil War Story

During the Battle of Gettysburg, July 1-3, 1863, an Wisconsin Irishman, casually extinguishes a burning fuse that lands among the troops

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

Historical Essay

Black Hawk War Powder Horn

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Powder horn used by a member of Colonel Dodge's militia during the Black Hawk War, 1832. (Museum object #1947.851)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Warner "Auto-Meter," Model K-2, made by the Warner Instrument Company of Beloit, Wisconsin, c. 1906-1910. (Museum object #1989.81.1)

Argument and an Unpopular Choice

Discover how Madison became the capitol city during the first Wisconsin territorial convention

Historical Essay

Benjamin Butts (1853-1930)

One Man's Journey from Slavery to Madison Business Owner to State Assembly Staff Member

Learn about a freed slave's intriguing story as a barber serving Wisconsin's prominent politicians, and as a well-known, beloved face in the capital city.

Historical Essay

Milwaukee Sewer Socialism

How Wisconsin Became America's Most Socialist State

Discover how Milwaukee, Wisconsin became America's first Socialist city.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 37th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison and mustered into service on April 9, 1864.

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