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 Reuben Gold Thwaites

Brief biography of Reuben Gold Thwaites managing editor of the WI State Journal and historian who was "the best known non-political man in Wisconsin."

Read an account of the French explorer who claimed much of Wisconsin for France and who traded with several Indian tribes near Green Bay, Wisconsin.

French Exploration of the North American Interior

Find out about the two French explorers that traversed the Wisconsin countryside in 1673. This artcile details their exploration of the Mississippi.

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.

Last Socialist to Run a Major American City

Learn about Milwaukee's third and last Socialist mayor. Read about the many improvements made to the city of Milwaukee under his leadership.

Jesuit Missionary

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

Brief biography of George H. Walker railroad promoter and politician who was twice mayor of Milwaukee (1851, 1853).

Brief biography of George H. Walker railroad promoter and politician who was twice mayor of Milwaukee (1851, 1853).

Historical Essay

Berger, Victor, 1860-1929

Symbol of Milwaukee Socialism

Learn about the man who was the symbol of Milwaukee Socialism. Read about his involvement in the newspaper business, politics, and his anti-war stance.

Historical Essay

Lapham, Increase, 1811-1875

Wisconsin's First Scientist

Read about Wisconsin's first scientist. Learn about his achievements; including his scientific writings, and his work as an engineer and land surveyor.

Menominee War Chief

Learn about the leadership of this Menominee War Chief and his negotiations with the U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs.
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