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.

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Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Plaque commemorating the passage of the 1915 Seaman's Act. (Museum object #1942.530)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Appointment book made of ivory, used by Wisconsin politician and businessman Cassius Fairchild of Madison, WI, during the 1850s. (Museum object #1971.19)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Learn about Robert M. La Follette's significant role in establishing the direct primary elections in Wisconsin.

Historical Essay

Robert M. La Follette

Governor and Progressive

Discover how Robert "Fighting Bob" La Follette and the Progressive Movement reformed state government and the Republican Party.

Historical Essay

Woman Suffrage Tunic

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Parade tunic worn by Wisconsin suffrage supporter during Republican National Convention in Chicago, Illinois, 1916. (Museum object #1956.1450)

Historical Essay

Wisconsin's First Election

Creating the Wisconsin Territory

Discover the story of Wisconsin's first elections and how the state was divided into its present-day areas.

Historical Essay

Gumball Slot Machine

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Trade stimulator gumball slot machine seized from a Shullsburg, Wisconsin tavern in 1945. (Museum object #2008.13.1A-B)

Historical Essay

Wisconsin Governors

View a chronological list of Wisconsin governors.

Get to know Isaac P. Walker, the first Wisconsin resident to be a presidential candidate contender in 1850.
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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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