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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Historical Essay

Bonne Fete, Sieur La Salle!*

Robert de La Salle was on the first expedition to the upper Great Lakes and went on to claim the Mississippi River watershed in the name of France.

Historical Essay

The First Madison Lodgings

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

When and where did The Gideons International really begin? There are more answers then you would think. Give this a read and decide for yourself.

Discover the significant role that the Peace Pipe has played in a number of moments throughout Wisconsin's history.

Discover Belle Boyd, the celebrity Civil War spy who died while performing in The Wisconsin Dells.

Learn about the attack on Pearl Harbor through these first hand accounts from Wisconsinites who were there when it happened.

Discover the connection between P.T. Barnum and the 1853 statewide referendum on liquor sales and why it failed.

In 1959 Rev. A.A.A. Schmirler traced the path Fr. Rene Menard took in 1661 down northern Wisconsins rivers to discover where Menard likely died.

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

Historical Essay

Newhall House Hotel Fire

Read about the tragic fire that burned down Milwaukee landmark, The Newhall House Hotel, leaving 76 dead.
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