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Historical Essay

Curling in Wisconsin

Discover the rich history of the sport of curling in Wisconsin.

Historical Essay

Madison's First Thanksgiving

The Power of the Pumpkin

Read the story of the first Thanksgiving celebrated in Madison.

Steamships, Canals and the 19th Century Economy

Discover what happened when 19th century Wisconsin settlers tried to construct a canal between the Mississippi and the Great Lakes.

View these 19th-century panoramic, detailed maps of Wisconsin communities.

An Unreliable Text and Other Evidence

Wisconsin History books teach that Jean Nicolet was the first white person to reach the state, but he may have been the second.

Historical Essay

Stephenson, Isaac 1829-1918

Lumberman, Financier and Congressman

Biography of Isaac Stephenson who was a lumberman, financier and congressman.

The Printer and the Priest

Discover how Wisconsin got its first printing press, and the impact that a Catholic priest would have on Ho-Chunk literacy.

Soldier, Fur Trader and "Father of Wisconsin"

Brief biography of soldier, fur trader and the "Father of Wisconsin," Charles Michel Langlade.

Historical Essay

Wisconsin's Early Schools

How the University was Began

Discover how the lack of educational opportunities in Wisconsin helped create the University of Wisconsin.

Photographs of Public Libraries in Wisconsin

Learn about how the Wisconsin Free Library Commission helped to establish and improve free public libraries in Wisconsin.

A Wisconsin Civil War Story

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

How Wisconsin was Divided

Discover how the Ordinance of 1787 extended government, prohibited slavery and led to the survey of public lands north of the Ohio River.

Missionary and Clergyman

Biography of Richard Fish Cadle, Episcopal clergyman and missionary who established many Wisconsin parishes.

Historical Essay

Reaume, Charles 1752-1821


Brief biography of legendary judge Charles Reaume.

Historical Essay

Land Speculation and Cities

How Real Estate Owners Created Wisconsin

Discover how land owners promoted their towns and villages for settlers and created the cities you know today.

Learn about the development of professional sports teams in Wisconsin in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Fur Trader and Explorer

Brief biography of Médard Chouart des Groseilliers who was a fur trader and explorer.

Learn about the origin, and the many spellings and multiple meanings of "Wisconsin."

Historical Essay

Bra Flag

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Land of the Freed-up Woman American flag banner made from bras, 1971. (Museum object #2000.79.1)
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