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Historical Essay

Benjamin Butts (1853-1930)

One Man's Journey from Slavery to Madison Business Owner to State Assembly Staff Member

Learn about a freed slave's intriguing story as a barber serving Wisconsin's prominent politicians, and as a well-known, beloved face in the capital city.

Read about the development of social and cultural institutions such as public schools, churches, colleges and universities and Indian mission schools.

Learn about the LGBT rights movement in Wisconsin. This article also contains links to other articles about the history of the gay movement in WI.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Schlitz "Sunshine Vitamin D" Beer Can featuring Continental Can Co.'s new crown top design, 1936. (Museum Object 2011.77.1)

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

Oldest known surviving license plate in Wisconsin, issued to a Mount Horeb man, 1905. (Museum object #1966.493.1)

Historical Essay

The First Madison Lodgings

Discover the story surrounding the planning and construction of the first building erected in Madison.

Historical Essay

Nolen, John, 1869-1937

Urban Planning in Wisconsin

Learn about the man whose vision as an urban planner helped transform the city of Madison, the state park system, and the University of Wisconsin.

Historical Essay

Vinnie Ream Marble Sculpture

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Spirito Del Carnevale (Spirit of the Carnival)sculpture by Vinnie Ream, 1870. (Museum Object #1965.270.2)

Historical Essay

Flapper Prom Dress

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Evening gown worn by Edith Evelyn Nelson to the University of Wisconsin's Junior Prom, c. 1923. (Museum object #1969.147.2)

Historical Essay

Wilder, Thornton, 1897-1975

Learn more about this Madisonian's contribution to the literary community. This article details his Pulitzer prize-winning plays and novels.

Read about the desperate 1832 battle near Madison, WI, of the starving Sauk, Fox and Kickapoo Native Americans against the British and the Ho-Chunk.

Historical Essay

The Black Hawk War

Read about the war with the Sauk Indians in the summer of 1832 which resulted in their massacre and defeat and the removal of the tribe from Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, U.S. Marshall, Business Owner

Historical Essay

Red Dot Potato Chip Can

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Container for potato chips made by Red Dot Foods, Inc., Madison, Wisconsin, c. 1950. (Museum object #2002.384.1A-B)

A Wisconsin Civil War Story

Learn how Cordelia Harvey established a hospital in Madison to help Civil War soldiers

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 34th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison and mustered into service on December, 1862.

Historical Essay

Magician's Escape Trunk

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Escape trunk, restraining devices, and curtain used by magician Ben Bergor of Madison, Wisconsin, 1940s. (Museum objects #1982.159.17,19,21,23,25)

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Politician, Manufacturer

Learn about the first extreme winters in Wisconsin suffered by explorers and settlers in the 17th through 19th centuries, with links to other articles
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