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

Giant Punt Gun

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Punt gun used to hunt waterfowl on Lake Mendota, Madison, Wisconsin, c. 1866-1870. (Museum object #1947.1743)

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 52nd Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison in April 1865, at the very end of the war.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 46th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison and mustered into service on March 2, 1865, only a few weeks before the war ended.

Historical Essay

Petersburg, Siege of

Civil War Battle Summary

Read about Wisconsin troops' role in the 10-month Union siege of Petersburg, Virginia, which led to the surrender of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

Read about the 4th Wisconsin Cavalry, originally 4th Wisconsin Infantry, from Racine, which served in the Civil War 1861-1966 and lost 431 men in service.

Learn about the Vietnam War and Wisconsin's role in supporting and opposing the American involvement in that conflict.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Cardboard Hanukkah decoration used by three generations of a Wisconsin family, c. 1960. (Museum object #2002.388.6)

A Popular Swindler

Read about John Till and the miraculous "medical" plaster treatment that led to his arrest by the State Medical Board.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

"Spanish Lady" costume worn for Halloween by Virginia Shaver in 1922. (Museum object #2003.29.1)

Historical Essay

Home Childbirth Training Kit

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

"Miniature Home Delivery Kit" used to instruct expectant mothers by the Bureau of Maternal and Child Health, c. 1938. (Museum object #1995.6.1-51)
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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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