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

Paine, Byron, 1827-1871

Civil Rights Law

Learn about the Milwaukee based lawyer who won two of Wisconsin's most important civil rights cases and was on the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Mexican-American War Officer

Historical Essay

Orson Welles, 1915-1985

Cinematic Visionary

Learn about this Wisconsin-born director, his relationship with the film industry, and his lasting legacy as a filmmaker.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Fond du Lac Manufacturer

Historical Essay

Doty, James Duane, 1799-1865

Read a biographical account of the governor of the Wisconsin territory who was largely responsible for the selection of Madison as Wisconsin's capital.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Lawyer, 8th Wisconsin Governor

Learn about the German born man who would become Wisconsin's 8th governor. This article includes links to original documents.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Politician

Read about the Norwegian immigrant who became colonel to the predominately Norwegian 15th Wisconsin Infantry during the Civil War.

Wisconsin Civil War Officer, Newspaper Editor, Philanthropist

French Fur Trader

Learn about one of the first French fur traders to visit Wisconsin. Read about his experiences with Indian tribes and his exploration of the countryside.

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.
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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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