June 2007 Odd Wisconsin
Last week the U.S. Dept. of the Interior took the bald eagle off the list of threatened and endangered species. According to press reports, by the early 1960s widespread use of the pesticide dichloro-diphenyl-trichloro-ethane (DDT) had nearly exterminated the entire species, and only 25 pairs of eagles were left in Wisconsin. Today there are more than 1,000 breeding pairs...
Posted in Animals on June 30, 2007
Next month the Society press will issue a printed anthology containing the best of these stories (and some new ones that never appeared here). The book was written by Erika Janik, who edits our members' newsletter, Columns, and contains 50 illustrations in addition to 200 pages of curious true tales. "Wowsers, this book is a hoot and a half..." comments...
Posted in Curiosities on June 27, 2007
"How's fishing?" That's the question that greeted Rev. A.A.A. Schmirler as he paddled the rivers of northern Wisconsin during the summer of 1959. The historian-priest was not fishing, however, but retracing the route of the first missionary to visit Wisconsin almost exactly 300 years before. Father Schmirler was trying to discover the exact location where Fr. Rene Menard died while...
Posted in Strange Deaths on June 17, 2007
On this day (June 15th) in 1832, the Secretary of War got so fed up with Henry Atkinson that he sent a new man to take over for him. Atkinson (1782-1842) is the general for whom Fort Atkinson, Wis., is named. When the Black Hawk War broke out in April, 1832, he was given 400 U.S. Army soldiers and about...
Posted in Curiosities on June 14, 2007
For a few minutes Sunday night, viewers of the debate among Democratic presidential candidates were treated to a discussion of the roles that former President Bill Clinton might play if Hilary Clinton is elected to the Oval Office. Husband and wife political teams are nothing new in Wisconsin politics -- albeit in a less prominent office. Wisconsin's first female sheriff...
Posted in Odd Lives on June 4, 2007