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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Historical Essay

Schurz, Carl (1829-1906)

Wisconsin Civil War Soldier, U. S. Senator, German-Language Newpaper Editor

Read about Carl Schurz, the German immigrant and political reformer who helped elect President Lincoln, fought in the Civil War, served as a U.S. Senator.

Historical Essay

Nelson, Gaylord, 1916-2005

Founder of Earth Day

This Wisconsin Senator, best known as the founder of Earth Day, championed the preservation of the environment and natural resources.

Jesuit Missionary

Read about the Jesuit priest who established several missions in Wisconsin during the 17th century.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Congressional Medal of Honor, Spanish-American War Soldier,

Read about the youngest colonel in the Wisconsin volunteers during the Civil War. This article includes several links.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Author

Learn about the Colonel who kept detailed accounts of several important battles of the Civil War.

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.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, U.S. Marshall, Wisconsin Board of Regents Member

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.

Explorer and Trader

Biography of Daniel Greysolon Sieur Duluth who helped protect the Wisconsin area against raids of the Iroquois.

Influential Early Wisconsin Settlers

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Have Questions?

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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