Introduction - WisconsinWisconsin is known as "America's Dairyland", because it is one of the leading dairy producing states in the United States. This Midwest state is the main producer of cheese in America and behind only California in milk production. Wisconsin is home to 1.6 million dairy cows. That is enough for a year's worth of milk for 42 million people! It is considered a Midwestern state, but exactly where is Wisconsin? It borders the U.S states of Michigan, Iowa, Minnesota and Illinois; and Lake Superior to the north and Lake Michigan to the east. Did you know that many of Wisconsin's county names come from the Native American tribes who lived there? Find out more interesting facts and information about Wisconsin in the list below, including when Wisconsin became a state, what famous people were born there, and other interesting historical facts. The kid friendly format ensures an easy read for all ages.
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Wisconsin Quick Facts
- Wisconsin was the 30th state in the U.S.A.
- Wisconsin was admitted to the union on May 29th of 1848.
- The capital of Wisconsin is Madison.
- The largest city in the state is Milwaukee.
- This Midwest state's total area is 65,497.82 square miles (168.35 kilometers) making it the 23rd largest state in the U.S.
- The population of Wisconsin is 5,757,564 (2014 U.S. Census Bureau estimate). It is the 20th most populated U.S. state.
- Wisconsin is known as the Badger State.
- The state flower is the Wood Violet.
- Major rivers include the Wisconsin River, Mississippi River, Chippewa River and St. Croix River.
- Wisconsin borders two Great Lakes; Lake Superior and Lake Michigan. In the state there are over 15,000 lakes, including Lake Winnebago, the largest lake within the state. Approximately 3 percent of the total area of the state is lakes.
- Residents of Wisconsin are called Wisconsinites.
- The state song is "On, Wisconsin!"
Wisconsin Interesting Facts
- Wisconsin gets its name from the name given to the Wisconsin River by the Native Americans who inhabited the area that is now Wisconsin.
- The very first typewriter was invented in 1868 by Samuel W. Soule, Christopher Latham Sholes, and Carlos Glidden in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
- Famous people from Wisconsin include Frank Lloyd Wright, architect; Harry Houdini, world-famous magician; William H. Rehnquist, Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court; and Don Ameche, Academy Award winning actor.
- Wisconsin's oldest city is Green Bay, founded in 1634.
- Before Ringling Brothers became Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus, the five brothers began their show doing juggling acts and performing skits throughout Wisconsin.
- William Sylvester Harley, one of the founders of Harley Davidson Motorcycles was born in Milwaukee.
- The Hamburger Hall of Fame is located in Seymour, Wisconsin where the first hamburger was sold by Charlie Nagreen, also known as Hamburger Charlie.
Wisconsin Historical Facts
- Wisconsin was home to many groups of Native American Indian tribes including the Dakota Sioux, Winnebago, Menominee, Ojibwe and the Potawatomi. In addition to these original inhabitants, other tribes such as the Cheyenne, Oneida, Illini, Munsee, Stockbridge and Huron made their home in Wisconsin after European settlers arrived in North America.
- In 1634, Jean Nicolet, a French explorer became the very first European to set foot in present day Wisconsin.
- Great Britain took control of the region where Wisconsin is now located in 1763 after their victory in the French and Indian War.
- After defeating Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War the U.S. took possession of land from Great Britain part of which is current day Wisconsin.
- On July 21st of 1832 the Battle of Wisconsin Heights, one of the last battles of the Black Hawk War took place near present-day Sauk City, Wisconsin. United States state militia fought the Sauk and Fox tribes.
- The Republican Party was founded on March 20, 1854 in Ripon, Wisconsin.
- Wisconsin was an important stop for slaves seeking freedom via the Underground Railroad. With Canada in such close proximity, over 100 slaves were helped to freedom in Canada by Wisconsin residents between 1842 and 1861.