The Civil War Home Front

The Civil War had a profound effect on nearly all aspects of life in Wisconsin. All residents, regardless of whether they became a part of the Union effort, felt the repercussions of war. After the financial shock of early 1861 resulting from the secession of the Southern states, the Civil War brought economic prosperity to Wisconsin. The war helped to consolidate transportation and industrial activity by increasing the volume of eastward-moving trade, especially when the closing of the lower Mississippi River restricted access to New Orleans. Railroads were overwhelmed with business, sending transportation costs through the roof. With the departure... more...

Original Documents and Other Primary Sources

Link to article: Women try to raise funds to improve soldiers' medical conditions, 1863.Women try to raise funds to improve soldiers' medical conditions, 1863.
Link to article: Girlhood and motherhood on the Wisconsin frontier, 1824-1860.Girlhood and motherhood on the Wisconsin frontier, 1824-1860.
Link to article: An Immigrant Who Became a Northwoods MissionaryAn Immigrant Who Became a Northwoods Missionary
Link to article: A Waukesha editor recalls the underground railroadA Waukesha editor recalls the underground railroad
Link to article: Henry Dodge brought his slaves to WisconsinHenry Dodge brought his slaves to Wisconsin
Link to article: More than 200 Wis. newspaper stories about the warMore than 200 Wis. newspaper stories about the war
Link to article: Ozaukee County residents riot to resist the Civil War draft in 1862Ozaukee County residents riot to resist the Civil War draft in 1862
Link to book: Roster of Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers, vol. IRoster of Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers, vol. I
Link to book: A local historian chats about Prairie du Chien (vol. 2)A local historian chats about Prairie du Chien (vol. 2)
Link to book: Wisconsin women tell their stories of life on the Civil War home front.Wisconsin women tell their stories of life on the Civil War home front.
Link to book: A local historian chats about Prairie du Chien (vol. 1)A local historian chats about Prairie du Chien (vol. 1)
Link to images: Civil War Recruitment Broadside, 1861Civil War Recruitment Broadside, 1861
Link to images: Photograph of attorney Byron Paine, ca. 1860Photograph of attorney Byron Paine, ca. 1860
Link to manuscript: A Rock Co. soldier writes home, 1862-1865A Rock Co. soldier writes home, 1862-1865
Link to manuscript: Emilie Quiner's diary of Wisconsin during the Civil War, 1861-1863Emilie Quiner's diary of Wisconsin during the Civil War, 1861-1863
Link to manuscript: Letters by relatives of Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1861-1919Letters by relatives of Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1861-1919
Link to manuscript: Ma Ingalls describes family life in 1861Ma Ingalls describes family life in 1861
Link to manuscript: Daily life for a working class woman in Onalaska, 1864Daily life for a working class woman in Onalaska, 1864
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