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2013 Museum Exhibit Award Winner Announced


A view of Fort Crawford from the valley. A U.S. flag flies above the white hospital building.
Fort Crawford, 1840. Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin. Postcard of the military hospital at Fort Crawford. View the original source document: WHI 42263

The Prairie du Chien Historical Society has been awarded the 2013 Museum Exhibit Award for its exhibit, "Swift U.S. Army General Hospital and Fort Crawford during the Civil War." The local historical society won the award in the category of museum exhibits by a museum with an annual operating budget of more than $50,000.

About the Award

This award is given to the organization that creates an exhibit that meets the award criteria and, in the opinion of the judges, made the most valuable contribution to public understanding of Wisconsin's past during the preceding calendar year.

About the Exhibit

Swift U.S. Army General Hospital was one of three Civil War hospitals in Wisconsin established through the efforts of Cordelia Harvey. Harvey made providing facilities for medical care to Civil War veterans her mission after the untimely accidental death of her husband, Gov. Louis P. Harvey, while he was on a medical and public health expedition in the South to inspect the condition of wounded Wisconsin troops.

Swift Hospital opened in November 1864. Volunteer medical staff cared for more than 1,400 men from Wisconsin and Minnesota regiments who were housed in a former hotel and the Fort Crawford Hospital. In the final days of its operation, Gen. Ulysses S. Grant visited the men still receiving care at the Swift Hospital.

The permanent exhibit is located in the Fort Crawford Military Hospital, the only remaining building of the three hospitals that Cordelia Harvey helped to create.

A panel of judges from the Wisconsin Historical Society recommended the exhibit receive the award. The Wisconsin Historical Society's Board of Curators approved the 2013 Museum Exhibit Award.

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