Wisconsin History Day By Day

Related Web Sites:
Development of the Railroad

Milwaukee's First Depot

Law and Locomotives: The Impact of the Railroad on Wisconsin Law in the Nineteenth Century

Read More About It

"Wisconsin Transportation" by the Wisconsin Historical Society

"The Iron Horse: How Railroads Changed America" by Richard Wormser


iron horse

Interesting Fact:

The first train included four passenger cars and one freight, travelling at ten miles an hour.

Study Questions:

  • Hundreds of people lined the tracks to watch the first train. Why was this event so important to the people?
  • The railroad officials were hoping to connect Milwaukee and the Mississippi River. How would that impact commerce?
  • The railroad was so important to the growth of the state. Why did the importance of the railroad diminish starting in the mid to late twentieth century?

    U.S. historical events that occurred on February 25:

    1793: The first cabinet meeting on record is held at the home of President George Washington.
    1964: Cassius Clay becomes the world heavyweight boxing champion.

  • February 25

    February 25, 1851: The Milwaukee and Mississippi Line became the first railroad in Wisconsin. It traveled from Milwaukee to Waukesha.

    February 26, 1851 Milwaukee Sentinel and Gazette

    Wisconsin History Day By Day homepage
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