Use the smaller-sized text Use the larger-sized text Use the very large text

December 2009 Odd Wisconsin

Winter Break

As 2009 comes to its close, Odd Wisconsin's staff are hunkering down far from the office on the annual mid-winter break. It's time for reruns. Because we know there are loyal readers who can't do without a weekly dose of historical distraction, we offer this selection of strange stories from the previous 12 months: So Cold Their Noses Fell Off...
read more.
Posted in on December 28, 2009

Of Partridges and Pear Trees

We may never know exactly what Americans understood by the refrain "and a partridge in a pear tree" since the word partridge was used for an amazingly wide variety of birds in America. Here in Wisconsin it was haphazardly applied to any small game bird, but especially to the spruce grouse and the ruffed grouse. Two unusual gifts of partridges...
read more.
Posted in Animals on December 21, 2009

Christmas Dinner in Wisconsin, 1836

As you celebrate your family's traditions this week, consider how the people who lived here before you celebrated theirs. This memoir of pioneer Green Bay recalls how bear, sturgeon, and venision were on the dining room table for Christmas dinner in 1836, with the faces of Indians dressed in their finery pressed to the window. While staid Yankees from New...
read more.
Posted in Curiosities on December 17, 2009

Toddler Survived Scalping in 1827

By the summer of 1827, Ho-Chunk leaders had become alarmed at the number of white squatters on their lands. An 1825 treaty had drawn boundaries to keep settlers and native peoples apart, but for two years lead miners had ignored it and streamed into territory reserved for the tribe. The Commissioner of Indian Affairs estimated that by 1827 2,000 whites...
read more.
Posted in Children on December 14, 2009

Birth of the Snowmobile

Each winter people across the state zip-up their Ski-doo jackets, strap on their helmets, and rev up for a season of snowmobiling. We wonder how many of them know that the snowmobile was invented here in Wisconsin in 1924. Slowed by an injured foot, Carl Eliason sought an alternative way to get around during the harsh winters up north....
read more.
Posted in Curiosities on December 10, 2009

  • Questions about this page? Email us
  • Email this page to a friend
select text size Use the smaller-sized textUse the larger-sized textUse the very large text