Milwaukee History

Local filmmakers explore the life and legacy of Milwaukee's civil rights activist. Read more

I Hate Hollywood


Photo credit: Getty Images

The year 2020 will be momentous for Milwaukee with the Democratic National Convention happening in summer. So, as we ring in the new year, how can we gear up for our unprecedented civic close-up? Read more

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Illustration by: Jorgen Mac

Prior to the onset of rap music, black Milwaukee was awash in our original rhythm and blues, or ‘doo-wop.’ Read more

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In the old days, Trick or Treat in Milwaukee meant vandalism and violence. Read more

Milwaukee History


Photo Credit: Wisconsin Historical Society

The History Display at the Fair Park’s south side chronicles the Fair’s history for the past 168 years. Read more

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Milwaukee author Matthew J. Prigge will discuss his latest book, Damn the Old Tinderbox!: Milwaukee’s Palace of the West and the Fire that Defined an Era, at Boswell Book Co. on March 19. Read more


A local historian chronicles the story of Milwaukee’s Irish community in a new book. Read more


In honor of the Fourth of July, What Made Milwaukee FamousPresents a story from Matthew J. Prigge’s Milwaukee Mayhem about an 1880tragedy that stained that year’s Independence Day celebration.Mary Van Avery had been employed at the Hanl.. Read more

Milwaukee History

There was apopular fascination in the U.S. in the 1920s with aviation and competitiveflying was, for a time, a sport that rivaled baseball, boxing and horseracingfor prominence in the collective American consciousness. While most of this w.. Read more

Milwaukee History

Whenwe left our story last week, one of the daring pawn shop bandits had beenshot down by a police detective, while the other three had just made theirgetaway in a hijacked taxicab…Asthe driver Ulrich sped west on Wells Street, the gunman M.. Read more

Milwaukee History

John Gurda’s 2007 book Cream City Chronicles is out in paperback. Read more


John Gurda has earned accolades for bringing Milwaukee’s unique past to life. Gurda’s newest book, Milwaukee: City of Neighborhoods, is a lavishly illustrated, well-informed examination of the city through its components, the neighborhoods ... Read more

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Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reporter Meg Jones will read from her first book, World War II Milwaukee, at Boswell Book Co. at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 29. Read more


Matthew Prigge will make a presentation on his latest book, Milwaukee Mayhem: Murder and Mystery in the Cream City’s First Century, on Tuesday, Oct. 20, at the Milwaukee Central Library’s Centennial Hall. Read more


Gavin Schmitt uncovers the history of the Milwaukee Mafia in his latest book and will discuss the topic at the Milwaukee Public Library. Read more


Perhaps no fringe character of Milwaukee’s history is as well known or as misunderstood as Katherine B. “Kittie” Williams, the so-called “grand Madame” of the city’s old red light district. Read more

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Remembering Dick Bacon, Milwaukee’s prominent nudist. Read more

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Hello.Welcome to What Made Milwaukee Famous , the new history blog here on the brand new My name is Matthew J. Prigge and I’ll be your host. I have been a semi-regular contributor to the Shepherd since 2011 and have publish.. Read more

Milwaukee History 3 Comments

“They say a seagull gets homesick away from the water and can’t live,” the graying old captain told the Milwaukee Journal. “I’d be the same way. Take me away from the water and I’d get homesick Read more

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On Tuesday, Feb. 19, 1929, 36-year-old Frances Schurmeir climbed to the top of the brass railing of the fifth floor of Milwaukee’s City Hall overlooking the building’s open-air atrium. Just four days prior, Schurmeir’s husband had taken a c... Read more

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