By John Zimm
On an autumn day in 1845, a conversation between two pioneers sparked an idea that has grown into one of Wisconsin's most cherished institutions - the Wisconsin Historical Society, older by two years than the state itself. Explore the storied history of this grand Wisconsin treasure - from the Society's earliest days, as pioneers worked to record history even as it was happening; to the Society's struggles to weather the Great Depression and World War II; and its landmark efforts to record the most important social and political movements of our times.
The Wisconsin Historical Society has grown from a small gathering of pioneers, into a nationally renowned organization that serves 3 million people each year. Yet the basic mission of the Society has remained largely unchanged: to collect, preserve, and share the stories of Wisconsin, from every walk of life, in every corner of the state. The story behind the Society's creation is a uniquely Wisconsin story - one that belongs to all who call Wisconsin home.