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

Gold Rush Shawl

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Chinese silk shawl purchased in California during the Gold Rush by Joseph Stroebe of Winnebago County, Wisconsin in 1855. (Museum object #1960.10)

Historical Essay

1957 Soap Box Derby Racer

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

"Soap box" coaster car operated by Van Steiner in the All-American Soap Box Derby in 1957. (Museum object # 2009.56.1)

Historical Essay

Lottery Ball Drawing Machine

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Ball drawing machine used by the Wisconsin Lottery for Daily Pick 3 and Daily Pick 4 games, 1992-2000. (Museum object #2001.83.16.1A-B)

Historical Essay

Surveyor's Tree Blaze

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Surveyor's tree blaze from the 1841 expedition to lay out the boundary between Wisconsin and Michigan, found at Trout Lake, Vilas County, Wisconsin. (Museu

Historical Essay

Wonder Spot "Book" Sign

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Wonder Spot "Book" sign that greeted thousands of visitors to the beloved Wonder Spot attraction in the Wisconsin Dells area, c. 1990. (Museum Object #2007

Historical Essay

Scotch Giant's Shoe Last

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Shoe last (form) used to make boots for Frederick Shadick of Cottage Inn, Wisconsin, 1849-1854. (Museum object #1968.15.1)

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

1880s "Aesthetic" Dress

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Tea gown inspired by the "Aesthetic" Movement of the late nineteenth century, worn by Annie Cronk of Oregon, Wisconsin, c. 1881. (Museum object #1952.128)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

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

Historical Essay

Boy's Dress

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Dress worn by John Kiser as a child near Oregon, Wisconsin, c. 1856. (Museum object #1950.5744)
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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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