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

The Budget Deficit of 1921

How a New Progressive Governor Repaired the Economy

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

Historical Essay

Labor Day in Wisconsin

Beyond Beer and Brats

Explore the history of Labor Day celebrations in Wisconsin.

The story of Mary Hayes-Chynoweth, one of Wisconsin's best-known mystics who also predicted the future on a number of occasions.

Historical Essay

Milwaukee's Maverick Aviator

Milwaukee's William Mitchell went from a court-martial for insubordination to being widely understood to be the father of the modern U.S. Air Force.

Historical Essay

The Crowning of King James

Wisconsin's Brigham Young

Discover the history of early Mormon leader James J. Strang, self-proclaimed successor to Joseph Smith.

A Dishonest Democrat and a Radical Republican

Learn about the election that was so close that Wisconsin briefly had two governors until one was exposed for tampering with ballots.

Speculating on a Dream

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

Historical Essay

The First Madison Lodgings

From Under a Tree to Madison's Most Popular Lodge

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

Historical Essay

Sundae Sermon

Defining Sundaes

Was the first ice cream sundae made in Wisconsin or New York? Give this whimsical story a read and come to your own conclusion.

A Good Mother, a Good Friend and a Good Woman

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