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

Wisconsin in 1958,   pp. [69]-[228] PDF (45.4 MB)

Page 73

                Some years ago when the Wis-
consin legislature was considering
a descriptive slogan identifying
the state to put on the motor ve-
hicle license plates, a whole series
of phrases were suggested, some
seriously, some facetiously, before
"America's Dairyland" was agreed
upon. Although Wisconsin is
known throughout the world for
its tremendous dairy industry, the
name    Wisconsin   means   many
things to many people.
                                    -1 0L U  0IU  OUL Us WHO .UWe.l:' UUorNL
and reared here it is our homeland. To the many who crossed the
seas to hack out a farm from its early wilderness it was a haven
from persecution and want, an opportunity for economic, social or
political progress. To some it is the land of milk and cheese. Others
identify it with the manufacture of beer. Some look to it as the
pioneer in advanced government practices and the originator of
much important social legislation. To some it is the home of the
Milwaukee Braves and the Green Bay Packers. To others it is the
seat of a great university and an outstanding system of vocational
education. Not a few look to it as the land of lakes and cool verdant
recreational areas. Some look to it as a leader in certain industries.
To some it is a land of trees; to others a land of rolling farm land
and to yet others as a land of cities teeming with the bustle of eco-
nomic activity. Yet to all who are cognizant of its existence it is a
mitten-shaped area in the north central part of these United States
which has certain characteristics which identify it.
   Just as the fictitious figure of Uncle Sam symbolizes the United
States and that of John Bull symbolizes Great Britain, so the badg-
er, "On Wisconsin", cheese, beer and other items have come to be
identified with our state. Over the many years a substantial group
of items have gained official or unofficial status as symbols of our
state. It is the purpose of this chapter to provide some basic data
on these symbols of Wisconsin.
  The name Wisconsin. Although there are several opinions regard-
ing the origin of the word "Wisconsin", the derivation suggested
Louise Kellogg who was an authority on Wisconsin history is that
"The state derived its name from the principal river which runs
centrally through it. The Chippewas upon its head waters called this
river Wees-Konsan which signifies 'the gathering of the waters'.
They gave it this name, as an Indian trader informed me, on account
of its numerous branches near its head concentrated into one stream,

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