Collage of historic photos.

Historical Figures in Wisconsin

Learn about the lives of your favorite Wisconsin historical figures, from the famous to infamous, and their contributions to our state's history.

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Search by keyword below to find information on historical figures in Wisconsin.

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Brief biography of Helen Farnsworth Mears, the sculptress whose nine-foot statue, "Genius of Wisconsin," now stands in the WI state capitol.

Historical Essay

Stephenson, Isaac 1829-1918

Lumberman, Financier and Congressman

Biography of Isaac Stephenson who was a lumberman, financier and congressman.

Historical Essay

Glover, Joshua

Runaway Slave

Biography of Joshua Glover, a runaway slave from St. Louis, Missouri who sought asylum in Racine, Wisconsin in 1852.

Historical Essay

Bull, Ole Borneman 1810-1880

Musician and Concert Violinist

Read about Ole Bull, the Norwegian musician and concert violinist who resided in Madison for several years in the 1870s.

Historical Essay

Stout, James Huff 1848-1911

Lumberman, Businessman, Politician, Educator and Philanthropist

Read about lumberman, businessman, politician, educator and philanthropist James Huff Stout of Menominee, who founded the Stout Institute

Historical Essay

Kilbourn, Byron (1801-1870)

Land Speculator and Politician

Brief biography of surveyor, land speculator, railroad promoter and politician Byron Kilbourn, twice elected mayor of Milwaukee.

Historical Essay

Baraga, Frederic (1797-1868)

Read about the Austrian born missionary who worked with many groups of Native Americans and settlers in the upper Midwest.

Read about this Wisconsonite, whose leadership in the Women's Suffrage Movement helped Wisconsin become the first state to ratify the 19th Amendment.

Chief of the Sauk Indians

Biography of Indian war chief Black Hawk

Professor, Geologist and University President

Biography of Charles Richard Van Hise, professor, geologist and president of the University of Wisconsin.
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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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