Civil war


No, you won't find Confederate flag merch at Summerfest, either

Published June 29, 2015

It hasn't been a good month for the Stars and Bars. Only 150 years after it should've disappeared for good, national online and brick and mortar retailers have yanked the Confederate battle flag from their shelves and their sites. In other words, you will no longer find Confederate beach towels, belt buckles or even the General Lee (I'm bummed about that, actually) at Wal-Mart, Amazon, Etsy, eBay or many other stores around America. Fortunately, you won't find them at Summerfest, either, in the state that lost 12,216 men to the Civil War.


Assassinated on this day, Abraham Lincoln made his impression on MKE

Published April 14, 2015

It was called the "saddest week in Milwaukee's history." 150 years ago today, Abraham Lincoln was assassinated. As one early history of Milwaukee records, "The city was hushed in grief. Silently and sorrowfully the buildings, many of them still gaily flaunting the joyous decorations of the week before, were clad in the habiliments of woe." Many of those Milwaukeeans were doubtlessly remembering Lincoln's visit to the city, just six years earlier.


Westown leads charge to burnish Court of Honor

Published March 9, 2015

Last month the Westown Association launched a campaign to raise money to complete the restoration of the Court of Honor, a group of statues in the median on Wisconsin Avenue, between 9th and 10th Streets.


Renaissance creates absolute magic with Civil War-based "Amelia"

Published Oct. 19, 2014

From "Romeo and Juliet" to "Love Story," the tale of youngsters who fall in love, only to see death and a search for meaning in it all is so often told that it seems to have become almost a cliche of itself. But when that story gets mixed with history and put into the hands of a small coterie of very creative people, the story creates the kind of theatrical magic that comes only on occasion. That's what happened when "Amelia" opened Saturday night.


Shift switch: Civil War reenactor

Published July 24, 2014

Every now and then, the writers here at decide to give other, unique jobs a try. Some have tried cheesemaking. Others the ballet. Me? Well, I fought in the Civil War.


New books offer new looks at Mamoulian, Jensen and the Civil War

Published Jan. 17, 2013

For all the words written, all the energy expended on telling the story of Hollywood in all its richness, the life of director Rouben Mamoulian has been little more than a footnote at best. Enter Milwaukee writer Dave Lurhssen, whose biography, "Mamoulian: Life On Stage and Screen," has just been published in hardcover by the University Press of Kentucky. We also look at two other new books with Wisconsin ties.


How can we bring Koch's diaries back home?

Published Dec. 19, 2012

Henry Koch is among the most influential architects in Milwaukee history. In addition to many great public schools like Golda Meir and Eighth Street Schools, Koch designed such buildings at City Hall, The Pfister, Turner Hall, Gesu Church at Marquette, the newly refurbished Wells Building and the Ward Theater at the V.A.During the Civil War, Koch served as a draftsman under Gen. Philip Sheridan. While researching Koch, who died in Milwaukee in 1910, I discovered that a Canadian bookseller is offering Koch's Civil War diaries for sale for $12,000.


Waukesha family makes the past its present

Published July 13, 2012

Like any family in summer, the Theissens enjoy doing activities together. But unlike most families, their activities involve cannons, hoop skirts and Abe Lincoln.


Fallen Civil War veterans finally rejoin Union side

Published May 23, 2008

For more than 100 years, the gravestones of William Ryan and Lewis Jolliot incorrectly identified the fallen soldiers as members of the Confederate Army. The men will receive new markers in a ceremony Saturday.


Gig roundup: Chelsea Hotel sets perfect scene for Fever Marlene

Published March 3, 2008

Leave it to Fever Marlene, perhaps Milwaukee's best band at the moment, to take an unusual approach to its second disc. If fans expect "White China," which is officially released next week, to be more of the same, they will be sorely disappointed.


Black History Month

Published Feb. 20, 2008

It's February and that means it's Black History Month! This event, celebrated annually in the U.S. and the U.K., was founded in 1926 by an African-American historian Carter G. Woodson.


Fever Marlene finally unleashes "Civil War"

Published June 6, 2007

It may have taken a while, but Milwaukee's Fever Marlene is at last ready to share its debut album, "Civil War," with the masses. Catch the duo's CD release party this Friday at the Historic Turner Ballroom.


BURSPUR provided route to freedom

Published June 8, 2006

You can almost see the people, traveling the Underground Railroad route, in their escape from slavery to freedom. The Burlington, Rochester and Spring Prairie Underground Railroad (BURSPUR) trail in Racine and Walworth Counties was taken by hundreds of freedom seekers.