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Historical Essay

Madison's Castle

In the late 1800s there was a castle on the shore of Lake Mendota OTHER than the Red Gym. This is that castle's mysterious story.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, 9th Wisconsin Secretary of State, Newspaper Publisher

Thomas S. Allen is best remembered for his leadership of the 5th Wisconsin Infantry during the Civil War.

Historical Essay

How Madison Became a City

Madison went from a small village in 1836 to being organized and governed as a city in 20 years time

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)

Historical Essay

The First Madison Lodgings

From Under a Tree to Madison's Most Popular Lodge

Discover the story surrounding the planning and construction of the first building erected in Madison.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 2nd Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison, and mustered into service on June 11, 1861.

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.

Professor, Geologist and University President

Biography of Charles Richard Van Hise, professor, geologist and president of the University of Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

Read about the 38th Wisconsin Infantry, which served in the Civil War 1864-1865 and lost 113 men during service.

Historical Essay

Doty, James Duane, 1799-1865

Read a biographical account of the governor of the Wisconsin territory who was largely responsible for the selection of Madison as Wisconsin's capital.

The Constitutional Convention's Influence on the City

Find out where some of the most traveled streets of Madison got their names.

Speculating on a Dream

Join cantankerous British geologist George Featherstonehaugh as he travels to Madison in 1837 and finds things not as he expected them to be.

Learn about the first extreme winters in Wisconsin suffered by explorers and settlers in the 17th through 19th centuries, with links to other articles

Zoologist, Professor and University President

Biography of zoologist and professor Edward Asahel Birge who was president of the University of Wisconsin from 1918 to 1925.

Historical Essay

Mrs. Fairchild's Worth Gown

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Gown made by Charles Frederick Worth of Paris for Frances Fairchild of Madison, Wisconsin, 1880. (Museum object #1945.960,A)

Professor, University President, Geologist and Author

Discover the history of professor, university president, geologist and author, Thomas Chrowder Chamberlin, who establishing the university extension.

Historical Essay

Evinrude, Ole 1877-1934

Inventor

Biography of Ole Evinrude, a Norwegian-American inventor who created the first outboard motor.

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)

Read about the life of this influential Wisconsonite and his contributions to the field of architecture. Article includes links to many primary sources.

Historical Essay

Flapper Prom Dress

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Evening gown worn by Edith Evelyn Nelson to the University of Wisconsin's Junior Prom, c. 1923. (Museum object #1969.147.2)
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