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flag  History of La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

Journey back in time to La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

(LaCrosse)

Visit La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

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La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA - La Crosse Harbor  Picturesque America: Or, the Land We Live In. A Delineation by Pen and Pencil of the Mountains, Rivers, Lakes... With Illustr. on

The first Europeans to see La Crosse were French fur traders. These traders traveled the Mississippi River in the late 17th century, even though there was no record of any visit until 1805.

The first white settlement occurred in 1841 in La Crosse. The settlement was started by New York native, Nathan Myrick, who moved to the area for fur trading.

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There is MUCH more to discover about La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA. Read on!

La Crosse Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

La Crosse Harbor

Picturesque America: Or, the Land We Live In. A Delineation by Pen and Pencil of
La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

Artwork
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La Crosse Harbor

Picturesque America: Or, the Land We Live In. A Delineation by Pen and Pencil of the Mountains, Rivers, Lakes... With Illustr. on Steel and Wood, by Eminent American Artists, Volume 1
William C. Bryant
Appleton, 1872
La Crosse, and Scenery Above
Picturesque America... Oliver Bell Bunce, William Cullen Bryant
New Y
La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

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La Crosse, and Scenery Above
Picturesque America... Oliver Bell Bunce, William Cullen Bryant
New York: D. Appleton & Co., 1872-1874.
La Crosse Harbor on Mississippi River, La Cross, Wis.
La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

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La Crosse Harbor on Mississippi River, La Cross, Wis.
State Normal School, La Crosse, Wis.
La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

Postcard
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State Normal School, La Crosse, Wis.
Main Street East from Third
La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

Postcard
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Main Street East from Third

Discover La Crosse: History, News, Travel, and Stories

Add informationAdd History/News/Story
1851 - La Crosse, Wisconsin founded

wikipedia.org
1854 - La Crosse
La Crosse, a thriving post-village, capital of La Crosse county, Wisconsin, is beautifully situated on the left bank of the Mississippi river, at the mouth of La Crosse river, 90 miles above Prairie du Chien, and 130 miles from Madison. It contains a court house, 1 or 2 churches, 11 stores, and 1 steam mill. Population in 1853, 543.
A New and Complete Gazetteer of the United States: Giving a Full and Comprehensive Review of the Present Condition, Industry, and Resources of the American Confederacy ... Thomas Baldwin (of Philadelphia.) Joseph Thomas January 1, 1854 Philadelphia : Lippincott, Grambo & Company 1854.
1868 - The LaCrosse (Wis.) Republican reports that in all parts of that city new buildings are being erected, and enumerates a large number that are being built.

St Joseph Herald
Saint Joseph, Michigan
April 11, 1868
1872 - H. T. Rumsey, a prominent citizen of LaCrosse, Wis., died at Chippewa Falls a few days ago, from an over-dose of laudanum, taken to produce sleep, while suffering from a severe nervous affection.

St Joseph Herald
Saint Joseph, Michigan
February 3, 1872
1895 - La Crosse
La Crosse, la kross, a county in the W. part of Wisconsin, has an area of about 450 square miles. It is bounded on the N.W. by Black River, on the W. by the Mississippi River, and is intersected by the La Crosse River. The surface is undulating, and is diversified with prairies and forests. The soil is fertile. Wheat, lumber, Indian corn, oats, and hay are the staple products. Silurian limestone under lies part of the soil. This county is intersected by the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad and the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad, which, with several other rail roads, connect at La Crosse, the capital. Pop. in 1870, 20,297; in 1880, 27,073; in 1890, 38,801.
Lippincott's Gazetteer of the World: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World Containing Notices of Over One Hundred and Twenty-five Thousand Places ... Joseph Thomas January 1, 1895 J.B. Lippincott
1897 - BIG BREWERY BURNED.
LaCrosse, Wis., Sept. 21. - Early Thursday morning fire was discovered in the roof of the brew house of the John Gund Brewing company's plant.
The malt house contained several car loads of malt and about 5,000 bushels of barley, which was totally destroyed, and the office building, which stands across the street, was not burned, and a part of the engine-room was also saved. The cold storage contained about 12,000 barrels of beer, which is also destroyed. The total loss will exceed
$200,000.
Iowa State Reporter
Waterloo, Iowa
September 30, 1897
1897 - FIRE AT LACROSSE. OPERA HOUSE AND ANOTHER BULDING BURNED - LOSS $200,000.
LaCrosse, Wis., Dec. 3. - The worst fire that has visited this city for years occurred about midnight last night. Of the old "Brick Pomeroy" block and the McMillan Opera House block, this morning only the tottering walls remain. The lower floors of the burned buildings were occupied by H. HEIL & Sons, shoes; ALLEN'S news depot; LANGSTAD & WATERS, musical instruments; S. BOWLBY, branch of the W. W. Kimball company; the Drummon company, jewlers; and MILLER Brothers
morgue.

The second floor was taken up with offices, while the third floor was used as the armory of the Company M of the National Guard. On this floor all the stores of the company were kept, and when the fire reached the powder and shells, the explosion was terrific.
The loss can hardly be estimated at this time, but will exceed $200,000. The greater part of this is covered by insurance. Six firemen were injured, three seriously. The McMillan Opera House was owned by the McMillan estate.
Logansport Journal
Logansport, Indiana
December 4, 1897
1916
La Crosse, a city, the capital of La Crosse co., Wis., is beautifully situated on the Mississippi River, iust below the mouth of the La Crosse River, about 40 miles below Winona and 130 miles SE. of St. Paul, on the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul and other railroads. It has a fine city-hall, court-house, opera-houses, and county jail. La Crosse has manufactories of threshing-machines, ploughs, and other farming-implements, engine- and boiler-works, iron-foundries, and very extensive lumber-mills, whose annual product is upward of 300,000,000 feet of sawed lumber, it has also large breweries and cooperages, and is an important (hipping point for grain, lumber, etc. Pop. in 1880, 14,505 ; in 1890, 25,090 ; in 1900, 28,895.
Lippincotts New Gazetteer: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World, Containing the Most Recent and Authentic Information Respecting the Countries, Cities, Towns, Resorts, Islands, Rivers, Mountains, Seas, Lakes, Etc., in Every Portion of the Globe, Part 1 Angelo Heilprin Louis Heilprin - January 1, 1916 J.B. Lippincott - Publisher
1916 - LA CROSSE ELECTRIC PLANT IS DESTROYED
[By Associated Press]
La Crosse, Wis., May 25 — The lightning plant of the Wisconsin & Minnesota Light & Power Company was completely destroyed by fire early today. It was started by a bolt of lightning during last night’s severe electrical storm. The loss is $75,000, covered by insurance.
The storm was the worst in years. Scores of factories and business places dependent on the electric power company for power have been forced to close. Street cars and wire service were put out of commission and newspapers will be compelled to confine themselves to an abbreviated edition. Several washouts are reported along the railroad tracks.
Sheboygan Press
Sheboygan, Wisconsin
May 25, 1916
1954 - August 1 - WKBT TV channel 8 in La Crosse, WI (CBS) begins broadcasting

historyorb.com
2023 - Here's a list of places to go and things to do in and around La Crosse:
Riverside Park:

A gem along the Mississippi River, offering walking trails, beautiful views, and various events throughout the year.

Grandad Bluff:

Hike or drive up to this iconic bluff for a panoramic view of La Crosse and the surrounding area. It's especially stunning during sunrise and sunset.

Pearl Street Brewery:

If you're into craft beer, check out Pearl Street Brewery for some local brews and a relaxed atmosphere.

Dahl Auto Museum:

Car enthusiasts will enjoy this museum, showcasing vintage automobiles and memorabilia.

La Crosse Queen Cruises:

Take a leisurely cruise along the Mississippi River on the La Crosse Queen, a classic paddlewheel boat.

International Friendship Gardens:

A peaceful spot with themed gardens representing La Crosse's sister cities. Perfect for a quiet stroll.

The Pump House Regional Arts Center:

A hub for the arts, hosting exhibitions, performances, and cultural events throughout the year.

Hixon House:

Step back... Read MORE...

Discover MY Roots: La Crosse Ancestry

Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

We currently have information about ancestors who were born or died in La Crosse.

View Them Now (sorted by year of birth)



male ancestorDavid MOULTON (23 August 1802, Porter, Maine, USA - 13 June 1867, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
male ancestorIsaac Hodson MOULTON (28 November 1829, , Maine, USA - 3 February 1919, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
female ancestorHannah A MAXWELL (5 March 1830, , Maine, USA - 6 May 1915, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
male ancestorCarl Moritz Ottocar MUETZE (31 January 1842, Lauban, Silesia, Prussia, Germany (Lubań, Schlesien, Preußen) - 20 November 1930 , La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
male ancestorFrancis Ignatius STELLPFLUG (28 Aug 1844, Udorf, Westfalen, Prussia - 26 Nov 1940, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
female ancestorMary Ann QUINN (29 Feb 1848, Whitehall, New York, USA - 2 June 1926, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
female ancestorEmma STUEBNER (28 May 1848, , Germany (German States) (German Empire) - 16 May 1916, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
male ancestorPaul Richard Alexander MUETZE (1 June 1848, Lauban, Silesia, Prussia, Germany (Lubań, Schlesien, Preußen) - 15 October 1902 , La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))
male ancestorWilliam Lewis MOULTON (11 December 1859, Hennepin County, Minnesota, USA - 21 June 1869, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA (LaCrosse))

Ancestors Who Were Married in La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

We currently have information about ancestors who were married in La Crosse.

View Them Now

male ancestorWilliam Thomas HARWOOD (4 July 1844 - 17 May 1916) and female ancestorEsther DODGE (October 1844 - 1 January 1933) married 3 July 1867
photo of August STARK August STARK (11 October 1850 - 21 June 1928) and photo of Paulina Caroline RETZLAFF Paulina Caroline RETZLAFF (24 October 1854 - 4 January 1919) married 5 March 1876

Genealogy Resources for La Crosse

Wisconsin Newspapers

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Updated: 10/11/2023 6:07:34 PM