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

Pierce, Hattie, 1829-1944

Born into slavery, Hattie Pierce lived 115 years and was able to fully experience both life before and after emancipation.

Wisconsin pioneer Joseph Crelie, might have been exhibited to spectators in 1864 as being 139 years old. But how old was he really?

Historical Essay

The Trial of Chief Oshkosh

The Clash of U.S Law and Indian Legal Tradition

The trial of Menominee Chief Oshkosh, one of the most famous in Wisconsin history, pitted Indian traditional justice against white man's law.

Discover Juliet Severance, the free-thinking Whitewater physician who was involved with the anti-slavery movement, temperance, and women's rights.

Historical Essay

Reform of Military Hospitals

Read about Cordelia Harvey's mission to reform Civil War era military hospitals and how invaluable her efforts were.

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.

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

Historical Essay

The Man with the Iron Hand

Learn about explorer Robert de La Salle's iron-handed chief lieutenant, Henri de Tonty, and what resulted in most likely the worst winter of his life.

The story of Louise Williams who provided business and legal counsel for women who lived all over southern WI for five decades after the Civil War.
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