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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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.

Historical Essay

Petersylvania, Wisconsin

Read the amazing story of a man who watched his potential 10,000-square-mile northern Wisconsin empire disappear into thin air.

Historical Essay

The Budget Deficit of 1921

Read about Gov. John J. Blaine's plan to deal with the Budget Deficit of 1921.

Historical Essay

How Madison Became a City

Madison went from a small village in 1836 to being organized and governed as a city in 20 years time

Historical Essay

Newhall House Hotel Fire

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

Historical Essay

Wisconsin's Indiana Jones?

Was Beloit's Roy Chapman Andrews the real life model for Indiana Jones?

Historical Essay

Death to Capital Punishment

Read about the final person to be executed in Wisconsin before the state prohibited the death penalty.

Historical Essay

Lumberjack Saved Union Fleet

Read this wild story about a Wisconsin Dells lumberjack applying his knowledge of dams to help Union forces escape a Confederate attack!

Historical Essay

Labor Day in Wisconsin

Explore the history of Labor Day celebrations in Wisconsin
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