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Historical Essay

Juneau, Solomon 1793-1856

Fur Trader, Land Speculator, Politician and Founder of Milwaukee

Brief biography of Solomon Juneau, the fur trader, land speculator and politician who helped found Milwaukee.

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.

Missionary and Clergyman

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

Newspaperman, Politician and Inventor

Biography of newspaperman, a politician and typewriter inventor Christopher Latham Sholes.

A Plot of Land Becomes a City

Discover how Wisconsin went from a small part of a territory to a capital city.

A Short Biography

Historical Essay

Petersylvania, Wisconsin

A Bizarre Story of Land Prospecting Gone Awry

Read the amazing story of a man who watched his potential 10,000-square-mile northern Wisconsin empire disappear into thin air.

Teacher, Newspaperman and Politician

Biography of teacher, newspaperman and politician Albert Gallatin Ellis.

Historical Essay

Williams, Eleazer 1788-1858

Canadian Clergyman, Missionary and Con Artist

Biography of Eleazer Williams, a Canadian clergyman and missionary who claimed to be the French Lost Dauphin.

Historical Essay

The War of 1812

Wisconsin's Involvement with the war on the French, British and Natives

Learn how the British relinquished control of Wisconsin and Americans took over the region's fur trade during the war of 1812.

The Virgin Mary Appears to an Illiterate Peasant Girl

Learn about the first and only manifestation of the Virgin Mary in the United States near Green Bay, confirmed by the Vatican.

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.

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

An Old Man's Tall Tale

Wisconsin pioneer Joseph Crelie was said to be 139 years old when he was exhibited to spectators in 1864. But how old was he really?

A Wisconsin Civil War Story

When the Beaver was King

Discover how beavers transformed Wisconsin's economy in the 1650s for the next two centuries.

Fur Trader and Explorer

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

Historical Essay

Beaver Top Hat

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Top hat made from beaver felt and worn by Green Bay resident Morgan L. Martin, c. 1825. (Museum object #1968.644)

Historical Essay

Campers' Wash-Up Kit

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Wash-Up Kit made by the Bay West Company, Green Bay. Distributed by the Yankee Paper and Specialty Co. of Menasha in the 1920s. (Museum object #1998.6.2)
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