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Historical Essay

The Founding of Major Cities

Read how land speculation and the development of transportation spurred settlement in 19th-century Wisconsin, leading to the rise of larger cities.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Copy of Gilbert Stuart's portrait of George Washington painted by Thomas Sully, 1854. (Museum object #1942.506)

Historical Essay

Silver Wedding Presents

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Silver ladle and spoon given to Syndonia (Hobbins) Jackson of Madison, Wisconsin as a wedding present, 1872. (Museum object #1955.304,A)

Father of the Wisconsin Dairy Industry, Wisconsin Governor

Find out about the Wisconsin governor who championed for high standards in the dairy industry and founded the State Dairyman's Association.

Historical Essay

Madison's Castle

In the late 1800s there was a castle on the shore of Lake Mendota OTHER than the Red Gym. This is that castle's mysterious story.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Wisconsin Attorney General and State Senator

Historical Essay

Leopold, Aldo, 1887-1948

Father of Wildlife Ecology

Learn about the man whose focus on the philosophy of conservation would inspire the environmental movement during the mid-20th century.

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)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Wooden Indian clubs used in the University of Wisconsin's Women's Physical Education Department classes, Madison, WI, c. 1900.(Museum object #1994.108.1-2)

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Three-Term Wisconsin Governor, U.S. Diplomat

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Appointment book made of ivory, used by Wisconsin politician and businessman Cassius Fairchild of Madison, WI, during the 1850s. (Museum object #1971.19)

Learn about the various visits Presidents have made to Wisconsin's Capitol city!

Historical Essay

Madison's First Thanksgiving

Read the story of the first Thanksgiving celebrated in Madison.

Historical Essay

The First Madison Lodgings

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

Historical Essay

Doty, James Duane, 1799-1865

Read a biographical account of the governor of the Wisconsin territory who was largely responsible for the selection of Madison as Wisconsin's capital.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

German bisque doll with her trunk of clothes and accessories, c. 1908. (Museum object #1966.408.1)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Deauville-style chair used at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Memorial Union Terrace on Lake Mendota, 1930s. (Museum object #1982.271.9)

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 Civil War Regiment

The 47th Wisconsin Infantry Regiment was organized at Camp Randall in Madison and mustered into service on February 27, 1865.
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