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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)

Historical Essay

Governor Dreyfus's Red Vest

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Red velveteen vest worn by Wisconsin Governor Lee Sherman Dreyfus, c. 1975. (Museum object #1982.450.15)

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.

Historical Essay

Vitamin-Finding Feces Bucket

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Sheetmetal bucket with wooden handle. Collected cow manure for University of Wisconsin, Madison, nutrition experiments, 1907-1911.(Museum object #1992.103)

This informative article details the creation and early success of the famous Ringling Brothers circus founded in Baraboo, Wisconsin.

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."

Historical Essay

How Madison Became a City

Madison went from a small village in 1836 to being organized and governed as a city in 20 years time

Historical Essay

Madison Style Ice Boat Model

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Madison Style ice boat model built by the Bernard family, c. 1917, rebuilt 1977. (Museum object #1983.292)

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Politician, Manufacturer

Discover this bittersweetly tragic story that brings together a feminist pioneer and the infant her husband found in the aftermath of Wounded Knee.

Historical Essay

Courtship Advice Fan

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Victorian scrapbook fan made by Julia Morris of Madison, decorated with suggestions about courtship, love and marriage, 1895-1899. (Museum object #1955.480

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.

View these 19th-century panoramic, detailed maps of Wisconsin communities.

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

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

Historical Essay

Home Childbirth Training Kit

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

"Miniature Home Delivery Kit" used to instruct expectant mothers by the Bureau of Maternal and Child Health, c. 1938. (Museum object #1995.6.1-51)

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

The 4th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Utley in Racine and mustered into service on July 9, 1861.

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Child's ceramic toilet set used by Elizabeth Marshall of Shorewood Hills, Wisconsin, c. 1905. (Museum object #1947.909,A-B)

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

Historical Essay

1960s Prom Dress

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Dress worn by Marti Hall to the spring prom at Madison West High School in 1966. (Museum object #2004.135.1)

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

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