Wisconsin History Day By Day

Related Web Sites:
Lake Kegonsa

Lake Mendota

Lake Monona

Lake Waubesa

Dane County Waters

Madison Lakes

Read More About It

"Madison, a History of the Formative Years" by David Mollenhoff

"The Physical Geography of Wisconsin" by Lawrence Martin

"The Naming of the Four Lakes," Wisconsin Magazine of History, 1945-46, by Frederick Cassidy



Interesting Fact:

Poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote a poem about Madison's four lakes. It begins, "Four limpid lakes,--four Naiades
Or sylvan deities are these,
In flowing robes of azure dressed;

Study Questions:

  • How were the four lakes created?
  • On a map, trace the route of the Yahara River from its source to where it ends.
  • The names of the lakes and river are Native American. What do the names mean in English?

    Search these newspaper databases for additional stories about the lakes along the Yahara River:

  • Newspapers on BadgerLink
  • Wisconsin Historical Society

    U.S. historical events that occurred on February 14:

    1920: The League of Women Voters is founded.
    1929: Seven members of the Bugs Moran gang are gunned in a Chicago garage. It becomes known as the "St. Valentine's Day Massacre."

  • February 14

    February 14, 1855: A bill was passed in the legislature formally naming the Madison area lakes (Kegonsa, Waubesa, Monona and Mendota) and the Yahara River.

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