Porcupine For Dinner: Christmas In Early Wisconsin
Tuesday, December 19, 2017, 11:30am
At the fur trade post in Green Bay in 1824, French, British, Americans and Native Americans gathered to celebrate a Christmas feast. Venison, bear, porcupine, geese, ducks and fish filled the tables. After dinner came dancing, singing and eventually, cake.
World's First Spiritualist School Founded In Wisconsin
Monday, December 11, 2017, 10:20am
The world’s first school of spiritualism, the Morris Pratt Institute, was incorporated in Wisconsin in December 1901. Its founder, Morris Pratt, used his fortune to fund a school for the scientific teaching of spiritual truths.
Wisconsin Humane Society Founded As Protector Of Animals, Children
Monday, December 4, 2017, 11:55am
We think of the Humane Society as an organization for the protection of animals. But Wisconsin’s organization , founded Dec. 5, 1879, was formed to protect both animals and children. The passage of child protection laws in the early 20th century led the organization to focus primarily on animals.
Mark Twain's Wisconsin Tour
Monday, November 27, 2017, 12:00pm
Samuel Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, was born this week in 1835 in Florida, Missouri. The writer picked up his moniker while piloting steamboats (it’s a boatman’s call for the minimum depth – two fathoms – necessary for safe navigation) and used it for the first time in a humorous travel letter he wrote in 1861.
When The Mail Came To Rural Wisconsin
Monday, November 13, 2017, 6:30pm
It's easy to take mail delivery for granted, but the convenience of home mail service didn't begin until the mid-19th century. But Wisconsin was one of the first places to experiment with free rural delivery in Sun Prairie in 1896.
Trick-Or-Treating Is Newer Halloween Tradition In US
Monday, October 30, 2017, 11:15am
Every Halloween children in costumes go door to door begging for treats. It’s a tradition with a long history, even though it didn’t catch on in the United States until the 1920s and 1930s.
Celebrate Frankenstein Friday And Novel's 200th Birthday
Monday, October 23, 2017, 10:40am
National Frankenstein Friday is this Friday, Oct. 27, and this year is an especially momentous occasion because it’s the 200th anniversary of the creation of Mary Shelley’s "Frankenstein: Or, The Modern Prometheus" (it was published on New Year’s Day 1818). Shelley’s novel about Victor Frankenstein...
A Short History Of Pumpkins
Monday, October 16, 2017, 11:55am
October is synonymous with pumpkins. The sweet bright orange fruit have become symbols of the fall and have been an important part of the season in Wisconsin and North America for centuries.
Rights For Women, African-Americans, Immigrants: Wisconsin's Radical 1846 Constitution
Monday, October 2, 2017, 10:00am
Wisconsin's first state constitutional convention met this week in Madison in 1846 to draft a constitution. It was the culmination of several years' effort to transition Wisconsin to statehood but the ratification of that constitution, a necessity for statehood, proved far more difficult than leaders expected.
The Surprisingly Controversial History Of Seat Belts
Monday, September 25, 2017, 10:55am
It’s hard to imagine a time before seatbelts. But on Sept. 25, 1961, Wisconsin became the first state to require seatbelts in the front seats of cars in all models built in and after 1962.
Political Animals: Politicians And Their Dogs
Monday, September 18, 2017, 10:05am
In September 1944, President Franklin D. Roosevelt was forced to defend the honor of his beloved dog, Fala, garnering widespread media attention. Roosevelt's statement would not be the first time, or the last, that a politician had a prominent pet.
Happy Birthday Beaver Dam-Raised Movie Star Fred MacMurray
Monday, August 28, 2017, 7:10pm
Movie star Fred MacMurray was born this week in 1908. The Wisconsin-raised actor made his name movies and television including "Double Indemnity," "The Egg and I," "The Absent-Minded Professor," "The Caine Mutiny" and "My Three Sons."
Wisconsin Saw Its First Ku Klux Klan Activity In 1920s
Wednesday, August 23, 2017, 9:05am
Recent white nationalist events in Charlottesville, Virginia, and elsewhere have led many states, cities and institutions to reevaluate their own history, including the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which was once home to Ku Klux Klan student groups. The Klan has been active in Wisconsin for nearly a century.
Wisconsin State Fair Celebrates 125th Year In West Allis
Monday, August 7, 2017, 10:55am
It’s Wisconsin State Fair time, an 11-day extravaganza of food, agriculture, competition, entertainment and rides. This year marks the 125th anniversary of the state fair grounds in West Allis. Wisconsin’s first state fair was in 1851 in Janesville. Different cities took turns hosting the fair for...
Artist George Catlin: Painter Of American Indian Portraits
Monday, July 24, 2017, 10:05am
Painter George Catlin was born the week of July 26 in 1796. Though he wasn’t born in Wisconsin, he spent a substantial amount of time here visiting with the Ojibwe and documenting their lives in portraits and paintings.
Devastating Floods Long Part Of Wisconsin History
Monday, July 17, 2017, 2:05pm
This summer has been particularly rainy in Wisconsin, resulting in extensive flooding in some parts of the state. Wisconsin’s abundance of rivers and lakes has meant flooding has long been a part of life in Wisconsin.