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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During the Progressive Era, this Milwaukeean helped Jewish immigrants assimilate into American society while maintaining their ethnic heritage.

Brief biography of Helen Farnsworth Mears, the sculptress whose nine-foot statue, "Genius of Wisconsin," now stands in the WI state capitol.

Black Voting Rights Activist

Biography of Ezekiel Gillespie who was active in Milwaukee's small Black community, especially on voting rights issues.

Professor, University President, Geologist and Author

Discover the history of professor, university president, geologist and author, Thomas Chrowder Chamberlin, who establishing the university extension.

Read about the Wisconsin governor's tragic death, which occurred while he was helping wounded Civil War soldiers after the Battle of Shiloh.

Suffragist and Lecturer

Biography of Jessie Annette Jack Hooper, prominent suffragist in Wisconsin civic reform groups and women's organizations.

Historical Essay

Bartlett, Tommy (1914-1998)

This Milwaukeean's prolific life in the entertainment business helped transform the Wisconsin Dells into the major tourist destination it is today.

Read about this Wisconsonite, whose leadership in the Women's Suffrage Movement helped Wisconsin become the first state to ratify the 19th Amendment.

Historical Essay

Edwin Witte, 1887-1960

Father of the Social Security Act

Learn about this Wisconsin-born economist and his active role in the development of the Social Security Act.

Author, Diplomat, Editor and Professor

Discover the history of author, diplomat, editor and first professor of Scandinavian languages at the University of Wisconsin Rasmus Anderson.
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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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