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On This Day: January 15

1819 - Wisconsin Governor Leonard James Farwell Born

On this date Leonard James Farwell, second governor of the state of Wisconsin, was born in Watertown, New York. The son of James Farwell and Rebecca Cady, Leonard Farwell moved west to Illinois at the age of nineteen and built a successful hardware business. He moved to Milwaukee in 1840, where his firm Cady and Farwell became the largest wholesale hardware house in the Midwest. He sold his business in 1849 and moved to Madison. At 32, Farwell became the youngest governor ever elected in Wisconsin. He served from 1852 to 1854. After the death of his wife, he moved with his children to Chicago. In 1871 he relocated to Grant City, Missouri, where he established a successful banking and real estate business. Leonard James Farwell died on April 10, 1889 in Grant City, Worth County, Missouri, where he is buried. [Source: First Ladies of Wisconsin-The Governors' Wives by Nancy G. Williams, p. 253]

1843 - Photographer H.H. Bennett Born

Pioneering landscape photographer H.H. Bennett (1843-1908) was born in Canada. He came to Wisconsin Dells in 1857, where he rose to fame as one of the nation's premier landscape photographers. His images were distributed around the nation, often as stereoscope views, and did much to promote early tourism in the Dells. You can see hundreds of his photos online, visit his studio in person, or read more about him in our Wisconsin Magazine of History. [Source: Wisconsin Magazine Of History, Volume 22, Issue 3 (1938-1939): 268-279.]

1863 - (Civil War) Engagements in Arkansas

The 2nd Wisconsin Cavalry fought a skirmish at Clarendon Road near Helena, Arkansas. On the same day, the 23rd Wisconsin Infantry led an expedition to South Bend, Arkansas.

1903 - Fairwater State Bank Organized

On this date the Fairwater State Bank was organized with capital of $25,000. The first bank president was Mr. A.W. Bonesteel; Vice President, Mr. Derk Bruins; and Mr. C. Griffith served as the first bank cashier. There were originally twenty-five stockholders in this establishment. [Source: Fairwater Chronology]

1953 - Milwaukee Braves Visit Janesville

On this date members of the Milwaukee Braves visited Janesville, toured local factories and attended functions of the Lions Club and Chamber of Commerce on a promotional tour for the upcoming season. Among the players visiting were stars Henry Aaron, baseball's all-time home run leader; Eddie Mathews, another slugger; and Joe Torre, who became manager of the New York Yankees in the '90s. [Source: Janesville Gazette]

1967 - Green Bay Packers Win First Super Bowl

On this date the Green Bay Packers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs in the first Superbowl championship. The game was held at Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, with 61,946 sports fans in attendance. The final score was 35 to 10. For their victory, the Packers collected $15,000 per player and the Chiefs $7,500 per player - the largest single-game shares in the history of team sports at that time. [Source:]