History Sandwiched In

The Scandinavian Invasion of the Midwest

Julie K. Allen, Associate Professor, Department of Scandinavian Studies, UW-Madison, traces the legacy of the nearly three million Scandinavians who immigrated to the U.S. between 1825 and 1930. Many of whom settled in the Midwest, fought in the Civil War, created homesteads, built Lutheran churches and universities and shaped the culture in their new country.

The Life of Carrie Chapman Catt

Rebecca Rodriguez, Librarian, Grace Balloch Memorial Library, Spearfish, South Dakota, shares the story of Carrie Chapman Catt from Ripon, Wisconsin, a suffragette and an advocate for women’s rights in the late 1800s. Catt served as president of the National Woman's Suffrage Association, and founder and president of the International Woman's Suffrage Alliance.

Wisconsin's Underground Railroad

Jesse Gant, Ph.D. Candidate, Department of History, UW-Madison, looks at the myths and legends surrounding the stories of the Underground Railroad in Wisconsin. Grant highlights the rescues of Joshua Glover and Caroline Quarlls and discusses racial attitudes in the years before the Civil War.

Crossing the Driftless

Lynne Diebel, Author, Crossing the Driftless, details her 359 mile canoe trip though the Driftless region of Wisconsin. Diebel and her husband, Bob, paddled on the Cannon, Mississippi and Wisconsin rivers, following the traditions of the French voyageurs and Native Americans.

Skunk Hill, A Native Ceremonial Community

Robert A. Birmingham, Author, "Skunk Hill: A Native Ceremonial Community in Wisconsin," shares the history of the Potawatomi village of Tah-qua-kik, or Skunk Hill, founded in 1905 in Wood County, Wisconsin. Birmingham highlights the role of the community in preserving Native culture.

Lessons of the Fox Wars

Eugene R.H. Tesdahl, Assistant Professor, History, UW-Platteville, discusses the attempts to exterminate the Meskwaki Nation in Wisconsin by French officials in the early eighteenth century. Tesdahl focuses on the attempted genocide, the significance of the Native peoples and the colonial history of Wisconsin during this time when the territory was contested ground.

Red Bikes, Green Transportation

Martha Laugen, City Manager, Madison BCycle, explains the history of bicycle sharing, discusses the bike share system in Madison and neighboring cities, and explores the future as bike sharing continues to expand within the urban transportation structure.

Gaylord Nelson and Earth Day

Bill Christofferson, Author, "The Man from Clear Lake," focuses on the life of Gaylord Nelson. Nelson was Governor of Wisconsin, a U.S. Senator and the founder of Earth Day. Christofferson highlights Nelson’s early life and delves into Nelson’s role as one of the leading environmentalists of the 20th century.

The History of Miniature Golf

June Melby, Author, "My Family and Other Hazards," addresses the rise and fall in popularity of miniature golf from its beginnings in the 1920s during the Great Depression to the present. Melby shares stories of her summers working at her family’s miniature golf course.

Kissel, Wisconsin's Luxury Automobile

Dawn Bondhus Mueller, Executive Director, Wisconsin Automotive Museum, Hartford, presents the history of the Kissel Motor Car Company, the manufacturer of custom built automobiles, located in Hartford from 1906 until 1931. Although fewer than 200 complete cars exist today, Kissel produced around 35,000 cars within a twenty five year span.

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