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Betty Quadracci

Medium shot of Betty Quadracci from the waist up, bending towards the camera lens while signing a signature plaque with her right hand. She wears a black long-sleeve blouse, a necklace, and a wrist corsage on her left hand. Her eyes look at the plaque on a long table covered with a white tablecloth. A hall with dim light and a red carpet are in the background.
Betty Ewens Quadracci was born the fourth of six children in 1938. Raised in SHOREWOOD and Milwaukee’s Upper East Side, she overcame polio as a young girl in the 1940s. In 1961, she graduated from Washington, D.C.’s Trinity College. Trained as a Montessori teacher, she helped establish the Montessori School of Waukesha in 1964. She… Read More

Beulah Brinton

Grayscale wide shot of the Beulah Brinton House facade in a residential area. The L-framed building consists of two-and-a-half-stories. The narrow side of the structure is on the right featuring windows on each of its stories. The longer side on the left has an entrance on the ground floor and a balcony on the second floor enclosed by balustrades.
Born in Jay, New York, Beulah Brinton (1836-1928) moved to BAY VIEW from Michigan with her husband Warren, a manager at the Milwaukee Iron Company, in 1872. There, she served as a midwife and taught English and home economics to the wives of immigrant steel mill workers. During her forty years in Bay View, Brinton… Read More

Caroline Quarlls

Grayscale headshot of Caroline Quarlls from the chest up in a black-colored frame. The image is blurry. Quarlls' body faces slightly to the left. She makes direct eye contact with the camera lens.
Caroline Quarlls (later Quarlls Watkins) is widely recognized as the first enslaved person to migrate through Wisconsin using the Underground Railroad, reaching Canada and freedom in 1842. Born in 1826 in St. Louis, Missouri, Quarlls decided at age 16 to escape slavery, leaving her home on July 4th, 1842. She traveled by steamboat from St.… Read More

Catherine B. Cleary

A blurry medium shot of Catherine B. Cleary from the chest up smiling in glasses and a checked pattern blazer. A small headshot of Cleary when she was younger appears on the left bottom corner of this image.
Catherine B. Cleary (1917-2010) was a formidable figure on a local and national scale, and a trailblazer for women in business. Born to a prominent family, she intended to pursue a career in education and law. When, despite her credentials, local law firms only offered her positions that did not take advantage of her legal… Read More

Catherine M. Conroy

Catherine Conroy sits on the left in glasses and long sleeved blouse showing a necklace she holds with both hands to other women beside her. Their eyes look at the chain while smiling in their formal attire.
Catherine M. Conroy (1919-1989) was a prominent leader in the labor and feminist movements in Milwaukee. Born in Milwaukee, Conroy worked as a cafeteria worker in a county tuberculosis sanitarium and County General Hospital after high school in 1938. She was hired as a long-distance operator at Wisconsin Bell in 1942, later transferring to the… Read More

Charlotte Partridge

Sepia-colored medium shot of three people in formal attire smiling while standing next to each other. The one on the right is Charlotte Partridge in glasses carrying a piece of paper. The one on the left is Miriam Frink with eyes looking at the document. A man in a suit and tie stands in the middle while glancing at Partridge.
Charlotte Partridge (circa 1881-1975) was an internationally renowned art educator, the founder of Milwaukee’s Layton School of Art, and Chair of the Federal Art Project in Wisconsin. Her legacy allows us to trace the growth of socially-engaged art practice during the first half of the twentieth century in the United States. Partridge was born in… Read More

Dorothy Enderis

Grayscale medium shot of Dorothy Enderis smiling in glasses and a flower-patterned shirt. Enderis sits at an office desk while her hands hold a paper and a pencil. Some documents and a fountain pen are on the desk lying next to her hands.
A world-renowned continuing education and recreation pioneer, Dorothy Enderis was born in 1880 to Swiss immigrant parents in Elmhurst, Illinois. The following year, her family moved to Milwaukee. After graduating from the Milwaukee Normal School in 1901, Enderis worked for eight years as that institution’s assistant librarian and then as a fourth-grade teacher. In 1911,… Read More

Eldon Murray

Headshot of Eldon Murray smiling in formal attire and glasses, making eye contact with the camera lens. Murray wears a black suit, a red tie, and a white dress shirt.
Eldon Murray (1930-2007) was a nationally-recognized figure in the gay rights movement. Murray was born and raised in Vincennes, Indiana. He relocated to Chicago at age 18 and later served in the Korean War. He settled in Milwaukee in 1955, where he began a career as a stockbroker. Murray’s local activism began in 1969, after… Read More


Grayscale family portrait of the Uszlers and their 13 children in dresses and suits. Louis E. and Wanda Uszler and three small children sit in the middle. Older children stand side by side surrounding their parents. Everyone's clothes are elegant. Wanda Uszler wears a pearl necklace and Louis Uszler wears a boutonniere.
The “family” is a core institution of all known human societies. There are a variety of definitions, reflecting the complexity of the concept. At its simplest, the family is “a group of persons united by the ties of marriage, blood, or adoption,” who usually, but not necessarily, live together in a “household.” More expansive definitions… Read More


Rear view of two people walking on a sidewalk towards Gimbels Department Store. The person on the left wears a dress and a large hat while the other is in a suit and a smaller round hat. A group of people crowd the entrance of the store. A big "Gimbel’s" sign appears on the building's exterior wall.
The people who have lived in the Milwaukee metropolitan area make up a diverse population—they inhabit a wide variety of social and economic dimensions, including, but not limited to the following: ancestry and ethnicity, economic situation, age, living arrangements, political and religious views, and gender. An examination of all these identities and categorizations, each providing… Read More

Golda Meir

Grayscale group photo of dozens of people posing in a classroom. Some in the foreground sit on chairs, while others stand behind them next to the room's walls. Meir is seen at the extreme right in a white dress. They all make direct eye contact with the camera lens.
Born Golda Mabowitz on May 3, 1898 in Kiev, the future Israeli Prime Minister, Golda Meir, faced anti-Semitism from an early age. Indeed, in 1903 her family moved to Pinsk to escape the threat of Russian pogroms. Shortly thereafter, the family emigrated to Milwaukee. There, the family opened a grocery store, which Meir helped run… Read More

Ione Quinby Griggs

Grayscale-colored medium shot of Ione Quinby Griggs from the waist up sitting in a white collared shirt, dark cardigan, glasses, and a hat. She sits next to a desk with a typewriter on it. Her eyes glance down at a piece of paper in her right hand.
An advice columnist for more than half a century, Ione Quinby Griggs (1891-1991) became a beloved Milwaukee icon. Famed in 1920s Chicago’s “Jazz Age” as a front-page “girl reporter,” her reportorial reputation came from coverage of women of lesser repute, “murderesses,” and mobsters’ molls of Chicago’s most notorious decade. However, her reportorial range encompassed women… Read More

Jane Bradley Pettit

Medium shot of Jane Bradley Pettit in a bright red sweater and blazer and black on the lower half of her body. She sits on a purple bench next to a flaming fireplace. Pettit wears glasses and a necklace. She smiles while making direct eye contact with the camera lens. Her clasped hands are placed on her lap. A stone wall surrounds the fireplace in the background. Some fireplace pokers ornamented with brass are placed vertically on the right background.
Called “Milwaukee’s No. 1 philanthropist,” Jane Bradley Pettit (1918-2001) earned the respect of an entire city as a result of her selfless giving to educational, cultural, and entertainment causes. Jane Bradley Pettit was born Margaret Jane Sullivan to Dwight Sullivan and Margaret “Peg” Blakney Sullivan. After they divorced, Harry Lynde Bradley, a co-founder with his… Read More

Josette Vieau Juneau

A framed oil painting of Josette Vieau Juneau sitting in black clothing with a white collar and black brooch. Juneau looks straight to the front while her hands rest on an armchair. Her dark hair is tied back.
Josette Vieau Juneau (1804?-1855), was the Métis “founding mother” of Milwaukee, who midwifed the settlement, literally and figuratively, in its formative years—and was the grandmother of a Métis U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, Paul O. Husting. Menominee and French Canadian, she was born in Green Bay—when still called La Baye, a vestige of its Nouvelle France… Read More

Laura Ross Wolcott

A drawing of a headshot of Laura Ross Wolcott. Wolcott is portrayed in a frilly top and glasses, face to the left. Text beneath the drawing reads "L. R. Wolcott."
Laura Ross Wolcott (1834-1915) was the first female doctor in Wisconsin and an important leader of the woman suffrage movement in Milwaukee. She was born in Maine, educated in Boston, and graduated in 1856 from the Female Medical College of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. She came to Milwaukee in 1857, opened a private practice, and later… Read More

LGBT Milwaukee

A poster inscribed "Gay Liberation Organization" in an artistic font colored in purple over a yellow background. The letter "O" in "Organization" is shaped in the form of two Mars symbols with the arrows crossing. A picture of a right fist is drawn at the bottom of the poster.
The composite designation “LGBT” functions as an acronym to describe lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Milwaukeeans who, since the 1960s, have challenged the city and metropolitan region to end gender and sex based forms of discrimination. In the process, they have demonstrated vibrant activism and artistry bifurcated by the politics of gender and race. By… Read More

Lizzie Black Kander

Headshot of Lizzie Black Kander in sepia. She smiles in a large hat while making eye contact with the camera lens. This image shows only Kander's figure with transparent background.
Lizzie Black Kander’s life experience coincided with the emergence of industrialized cities, rapid urbanization, and the massive immigration of her coreligionists from Eastern Europe. Elizabeth, “Lizzie” Black was born in Milwaukee on May 28, 1858 to John and Mary (Perles) Black. The Blacks lived on Milwaukee’s South Side, having moved from Green Bay in 1844.… Read More

Mabel Raimey

Grayscale headshot of Mabel Raimey smiling in a blouse with eyes looking slightly to the right.
Mabel Raimey (circa 1900-1986) earned the right to practice law in Wisconsin in 1927, making her the first African American woman to hold such a distinction. She would practice law until she suffered a stroke in 1972. Prior to her admission to the bar, she became the first black woman known to attend law school… Read More

Mary Blanchard Lynde

Painted portrait of Mary Blanchard Lynde in glasses and red shawl sitting with eyes glancing to left. Her head leans on her left hand that rests on top of a book placed on a red-colored surface.
Mary Blanchard Lynde (circa 1820-1897) moved from upstate New York to Milwaukee with her husband, William Pitt Lynde, in 1841, a few weeks after their marriage and about a year after her graduation as valedictorian from the Albany Female Academy. In addition to raising seven children with William, a successful politician and founding partner in… Read More

Mathilde Franziska Anneke

A full body shot of Mathilde Franziska Anneke in a studio wearing a long, dark velvet skirt and jacket covering her legs and arms. She poses in a standing position with a pen in her right hand and a small book her her left. Her face looks to her right.
Mathilde Franziska Giesler Anneke was an internationally known educator, women’s rights advocate, journalist and publisher, poet, author, and arts critic who immigrated to Milwaukee in 1850. Over her life in the city she became involved in major liberal political battles of her day, and in her later years she ran a renowned women’s school in… Read More