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

On This Day in Wisconsin History

Pick a Date


On This Day: April 27

1843 - Brother Joseph Dutton born
Brother Joseph was born Ira S. Dutton in Stowe, Vermont, and came to Wisconsin as a child. He served with the 13th Infantry during the Civil War, mostly tending the sick and burying the dead. Afterwards, he stayed in the South tracing missing soldiers, collecting their remains, and settling survivors' claims. These horrors and a failed marriage led him into alcoholism, and by his own account he spent the next decade in a drunken stupor. When he emerged from the gutter in 1876, he began to study religion and in 1883 joined the Trappist Monastery at Gethsemane, Kentucky. After hearing about the work of Fr. Damien De Veuster ("Damien the Leper") in 1886, Dutton made his way to Hawaii, where he introduced himself as "Brother Joseph" and joined the tiny relief corps at Damien's colony of exiled native Hawaiian lepers. He remained there as a lay brother until his death in 1931, building latrines, bandaging sores, cleaning clinics, and serving meals to the diseased and despised. Brother Joseph accepted no pay and directed that his military pension be given to the monks at Gethsemane. [Sources: Stewart, Richard. Leper Priest of Moloka'i (Univ. of Hawai'i Press, 2000); Capital Times, March 26, 1931]

1847 - Adam Gettelman Born
On this date Adam Gettelman was born in Germantown. He began his career in the brewing industry in 1865. In 1871, he joined the Menominee Brewery which was owned by his father-in-law, George Schweikhart. In 1876 Gettelman became sole proprietor of this company and incorporated the business as A. Gettelman Brewing Co. in 1887. He remained president and treasurer of this firm until his death in 1925. [Dictionary of Wisconsin Biography, pg. 142]

1864 - (Civil War) Recruiting efforts described
The Milwaukee Sentinel reported that the small town of Waupun had just raised two companies of infantry and $1,500 in cash to help the families of men going off to the front. It also noted that John Taylor of Eau Claire had raised a company of lumberjacks in that town, "every one of whom is six feet high."

1905 - Janesville Teachers Demand Pay Raise
On this date Janesville teachers demanded higher wages from the school board. They showed the average annual wage for a Janesville teacher to be $39.72. The teachers compared this sum to $410.80, the average yearly wages of a "factory girl" in Janesville. [Source: Janesville Gazette]

1906 - Hanh Wins Olympic Event
On this date Archie Hahn, representing the Milwaukee Athletic Club, won the 100-meter dash at the Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. [Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Online]

1951 - General Douglas MacArthur Visits Milwaukee
On this date, 16 days after he was relieved of command of Allied forces in Korea, General Douglas MacArthur visited Milwaukee and met some of the men who were under his command in the Philippines during the early months of World War II. These men included 13 Janesville survivors of the 192nd Tank Battalion. [Source: Janesville Gazette]

1962 - Beloit Criticized for Unfair Hiring Practices
On this date five African-American's picketed Beloit's Municipal Center to protest the city's failure to appoint an African-American man to the police department. The Beloit Police Commission maintained that the lone black applicant was not qualified, but the protesters maintained otherwise. [Source: Janesville Gazette]

1963 - Dave Brubeck Performs at Beloit College
On this date jazz legend Dave Brubeck brought his quartet to Beloit College for a concert in the field house. [Source: Janesville Gazette]

select text size Use the smaller-sized textUse the larger-sized textUse the very large text