History Sandwiched In

A Social History of Lake Mendota

Don Sanford, Author of “On Fourth Lake: A Social History of Lake Mendota,” explores the history of Madison’s Lake Mendota using historical maps, newspaper articles and photographs. Sanford shares stories of captains and ordinary people enjoying the lake.

History of the Wisconsin State Herbarium

Kenneth Cameron, Director of the Wisconsin State Herbarium at UW-Madison, discusses the importance of the Wisconsin State Herbarium, founded in 1849 by the Board of Regents. The facility contains 1.3 million pressed and dried lichen, plant, and fungi specimens; some from habitats which have disappeared over time.

The Battle for Prairie du Chien

Mary Elise Antoine, Author of “The War of 1812 in Wisconsin,” discusses the importance of the location of Prairie du Chien, settled at the confluence of the Mississippi and the Wisconsin Rivers, and the city’s role in the early 1800s fight for control of the Northern Mississippi River.

The Life and Times of Indian Agent John Kinzie

Peter Shrake, Author of “The Silver Man: The Life and Times of Indian Agent John Kinzie,” discusses John Kinzie’s life and his interactions with Native Americans in the mid-1800s. Shrake explores the history of the Midwest through Kinzie’s experiences.

The Black Hawk War in Wisconsin

John Hall, Associate Professor in the Department of History at UW-Madison, offers an historical perspective of the conflicts which lead to the Black Hawk War.

Milwaukee's First Mexican Community

Sergio González, Doctoral Student in the Department of History at UW-Madison, explores the history of the Mexican community in Milwaukee during the early twentieth century. González discusses how the discrimination the immigrants faced in their workplaces and neighborhoods fostered a sense of community and ethnic pride.

Wisconsin's Pre-Professional Base Ball Teams

Ryan Schwartz, Event Coordinator at Old World Wisconsin, explores the history of base ball games beginning in the early 1800s. Schwartz delves into a controversy focused on whether the game of Rounders was an early form of baseball or whether Abner Doubleday created the sport.

The Walleye War and Its Aftermath

Larry Nesper, Professor in the Department of Anthropology at UW-Madison, details the conflicts between the state of Wisconsin and the Ojibwe bands of northern Wisconsin in the 1980s and 1990s concerning the Native Americans' right to spearfish. Nesper discusses how the relationship between the state and the tribes have transformed in subsequent years.

Ship Captain’s Daughter

Ann Lewis, Author of “Ship Captain's Daughter,” reflects on what it was like to grow up in the family of a Great Lakes shipping captain.

Wisconsin's Famous Effigy Mounds

Amy Rosebrough, Archaeologist at the Wisconsin Historical Society, discusses the sacred earthen sculptures created by Native people a thousand years ago to mark the graves of their dead. The effigy mounds, found primarily in Wisconsin, take the shapes of animals, birds and spirits.


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