History Sandwiched In
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.
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.
Rob Gusky, Engineering Technical Leader, Kimberly-Clark Corporation, explains the background behind the National Bike Challenge he founded in 2008. The goal of the challenge is to encourage participants to ride for fun, improved health and a better environment.
Tom Caw, Music Public Services Librarian, Mills Music Library, UW-Madison, and Dean Blackwood, Founder, Revenant Records, share the stories behind the music made by Wisconsin musicians and recorded by Paramount Records in the 1920s and early 1930s. Although Paramount Records was known for its recording of blues, gospel and jazz, Caw highlights some of the other musical styles they released.
William Hauda, President, Friends of the Badger State Trail, explains the history of the Badger State Trail from its origin as a freight and passenger rail line from Chicago to Madison which failed to gain approval in the Wisconsin Legislature to a premier bicycling trail. Hauda discusses how the Badger State Trail fits into the national bicycle interstate system.
Amy Gnadt, Curator, Harley-Davidson Museum, Milwaukee, focuses on the rich photo archive at the Harley Davidson Museum. Recently discovered photos, featured in the 2013 "Exposed! Harley-Davidson's Lost Photographs, 1915-1916" document century old Milwaukee products, people and places.
Erika Janik, Historian and Author, discusses the role WHA Radio’s Homemaker’s Program played in encouraging rural Wisconsin women to adopt new technologies which allowed them to improve the quality of their lives and those of their families. The Homemaker’s Program aired for more than 40 years.
Patrick Jung, Associate Professor, General Studies, Milwaukee School of Engineering, delves into the myths claiming that Jean Nicolet was seeking an inland passage to China by way of the Great Lakes. Based on a misunderstanding of the original sources, Jung presents a fascinating reinterpretation of Nicolet’s journey.
Kim Tschudy, Historian and Author, shares stories of southern Wisconsin’s abandoned “ghost” towns. Important in the early development of the state, these lost towns now only exist as notes on old maps or in local lore.
Richard March, Folklorist, Author, explores the cultural landscape of Wisconsin’s ethnic, occupational and regional traditions. Groups that settled in the state retained many of their cultural traditions, creating a distinctive folk heritage.