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On This Day: June 12

1820 - Andrew Scott Sloan Born

On this date, Andrew Scott Sloan, Wisconsin State assembly member, judge, and Attorney General and U.S. congressman, was born in Morrisville, N.Y. Sloan moved to Wisconsin in 1854 and settled at Beaver Dam where he continued the practice of law. He was a member of the State assembly in 1857 and mayor of Beaver Dam in 1857, 1858, and again in 1879. He served in the United States Congress as a Republican from March 4, 1861 until March 3, 1863. Sloan was attorney general of Wisconsin from 1874 to 1878 and judge of the circuit court for the thirteenth judicial district from January 1882 until his death. He died at Beaver Dam on April 8, 1895. [Source: Biographical Dictionary of the United States Congress]

1864 - (Civil War) Final day at Cold Harbor, Virginia

From May 31-June 12, 1864, more than 160,000 men clashed at Cold Harbor, Virginia, during the Wilderness Campaign. The 2nd, 5th, 6th, 7th and 36th Wisconsin Infantry regiments took part. On June 12, the 38th Wisconsin Infantry arrived and was immediately thrown into combat. General Ulysses S.Grant began moving Union troops away from Cold Harbor to the southeast, preparing for an attack on Petersburg.

1899 - New Richmond Tornado

On this date the worst tornado disaster in Wisconsin history occured. The storm virtually leveled New Richmond on the day the Gollmar Brothers Circus came to town. At the time, New Richmond was a prosperous town of 2500 people and one of the most scenic places in Wisconsin. On the day of the storm, the streets were filled with residents and tourists waiting for the afternoon circus parade. Shortly after the circus ended, the tornado passed through the very center of town, completely leveling buildings. Over 300 buildings were damaged or destroyed. Massive amounts of flying debris resulted in multiple deaths in at least 26 different families. In all, the storm claimed 117 lives and caused 150 injuries. [Source: National Weather Service]