Wisconsin Historical Society

General Information

Current Issue of the Wisconsin Magazine of History

Summer 2019, Volume 102, Number 4

Current Issue of the Wisconsin Magazine of History | Wisconsin Historical Society
EnlargeWisconsin Magazine of History cover for the Summer 2019 issue

View the original source document: WHI 1923

Wisconsin Magazine of History Cover Image

Portrait of Theodora Winton Youmans, holding a Wisconsin flag and standing in front of a painted backdrop, ca. 1915. Youmans became president of the Wisconsin Woman Suffrage Association in 1913.

Table of Contents

EnlargeBelle Case La Follette speaks for women's suffrage in 1912 Wisconsin campaign

Belle Case La Follette

Belle Case La Follette speaks with characteristic vigor at the Fox River Fair during the 1912 Wisconsin campaign for women's suffrage. View the original source document: WHI 11701

Belle La Follette’s Fight for Women’s Suffrage: Losing the Battle for Wisconsin, Winning the War for the Nation

By Nancy C. Unger

On June 4, 1919, Wisconsinite Belle La Follette sat in the visitors’ gallery of the US Senate chamber in Washington, DC. She “shed a few tears” when it was announced that the US Senate approved the 19th amendment, sending it on to the states for ratification. On June 10, her happiness turned to elation when Wisconsin became the first state to ratify women’s suffrage. For La Follette, this thrilling victory was the culmination of a decades’ long fight. It was a triumph that contrasted sharply with the resounding defeat of the womans’ vote in Wisconsin in 1912 following an exhaustive statewide crusade in which she had played a leading role. The story of the two campaigns, the first a statewide failure and the second a national victory, reveals the dramatic changes emerging in the state and in the nation during the intervening seven years and highlights the role of Belle La Follette as a key player in the charge for universal women’s suffrage.


EnlargeFelice and Boudleaux Bryant sitting on the steps at their house

Felice and Boudleaux Bryant

Songwriters Felice and Boudleaux Bryant sitting on the steps at their home in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, in the early 1980s. HOUSE OF BRYANT

Felice Scaduto Bryant: From Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to Rocky Top, Tennessee

By Bobbie Malone

You may not know the name Felice Bryant, but you know the music that she and husband, Boudleaux Bryant, created. As the first independent songwriters in Nashville, they took the city by storm in the 1950s, playing a large role in its becoming Music City, USA. In so doing, they also created a body of music that made its way around the globe. Songs like “Bye Bye Love,” “All I Have to Do Is Dream,” “Love Hurts,” and “Rocky Top” captivated listeners and inspired young musicians everywhere, not only during the decades in which they were written but ever since. Hailing from dramatically different regions of the United States, they were two complete strangers from wholly different cultural backgrounds: he a small-town southern boy from Moultrie, Georgia, she a Milwaukee native of Sicilian background. A chance encounter in Milwaukee sparked the love match that became the Boudleaux and Felice Bryant story.


EnlargePortrait of America Jenkins

America Jenkins

1857 ambrotype portrait of America Jenkins, who lived enslaved in a mine owner’s household in the 1820s. After gaining her freedom in 1841, she became a central figure in the African American community of Pleasant Ridge, located west of Lancaster. GRANT COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY

Lead, Slavery, and Black Personhood in Wisconsin

By Eugene R. H. Tesdahl

One of the best known stories of early Wisconsin is that of the “badgers,” thousands of largely Cornish, English, and French-Canadian miners who flocked to the lead rush in Wisconsin’s Driftless Region between 1826 and 1849. Lesser known are the nearly one hundred African American miners worked alongside them at the lead mines and smelters of southwest Wisconsin and the domestic workers in mining households. Between 1827 and 1842, many of these workers were enslaved in a territory where slavery was outlawed. They and their descendants contributed to Wisconsin statehood, establishing an enduring legacy of black personhood in Wisconsin.


EnlargeTwo German Medics help a wounded Austrian soldier

German Medics help wounded soldier

Two German medics evacuate a wounded Austrian soldier in difficult terrain in the Carpathian Mountains. PHOTO BY EDUARD FRANKL View the original source document: WHI 134408

Image essay: Eduard Frankl, War Photographer

By Helmut M. Knies

June 2019 marks the hundred-year anniversary of the Treaty of Versailles, which not only ended the first world war, but helped set the stage for the next. Eduard Frankl, whose photography collection is held at the Historical Society, took many photographs during the war on the Eastern, Balkan, and Middle Eastern fronts depicting civilians, refugees, and the destruction of war in these key regions.


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