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Toepel, M. G.; Kuehn, Hazel L. (ed.) / The Wisconsin Blue Book, 1960

Toepel, M. G.; Kuehn, Hazel L.
Introduction,   pp. [xi]-xii PDF (642.9 KB)

Page [xi]

HE INTRODUCTION to the 1958 edition of the Wis-
    consin Blue Book contained a recital of the evolution of
this publication which has been issued under that title since
1878. While the general outline of the Blue Book has been
fairly stable for many years, its preparation is by no means
a routine task because of the constant changes in the govern-
mental process in Wisconsin. Departments rise and fall;
functions are created and abolished; staff is hired and re-
leased. Were the Blue Book a picture of Wisconsin state
government on January 1 of even years when copy is to be
in the printer's hands, it would begin to be out of date on
January 2.
  Not only is state government stable for but a moment, but
its evolution lags behind the authority to make change. An
agency created by law today may not become a full-blown
entity for some time. Its components may unfold at a barely
perceptible rate. Its objectives may be translated into a
working program only after a period of exploration. Appoint-
ments may be held in abeyance; bills which affect the or-
ganization and operation of state government may require
months to become effective after approval by both houses
of the legislature. Thus the editors of the Blue Book are
confronted perpetually with the problems of accuracy and
of currency. Accuracy is an attainable goal; currency is
not. The lag between the submission of the copy and the
date of publication precludes the inclusion of the most recent
   For some years the editors have sought to bring together
 each biennium the data on a significant segment of state
 government in a comprehensive main article. The 1960 edi-
 tion of the Blue Book follows this trend with an article in-
 corporating a biographical sketch of each of the 34 men who
 held the office of Governor between 1848 and 1958. Each
 sketch is accompanied by a photograph of what is, or is
 purported to be, the official portrait of the Governor involved
 except in the case of Acting Governor MacArthur of whom
 no portrait exists. It is hoped that these highlights in the

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