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John Gurda shares how the update of his classic book brings Milwaukee into the new Millennium

Historian John Gurda spoke at the Milwaukee County Historical Society (MCHS) on December 8 to a packed crowd of historical enthusiasts, sharing his insights into local developments from the past two decades and why a major update was made to his classic book about the city. First published in 1999, John Gurda’s book The Making of Milwaukee has been used as a standard history resource for the community it chronicles. It tells the story of how a Native American trading post at the crossroads of three rivers by a Great Lake became a thriving European settlement under Solomon Juneau,...

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Frank Lewis: Writing about the black experience in Milwaukee

Growing up as a young man of color in Milwaukee, author Frank Lewis found writing as a way to channel his imagination and express his creativity. With the release of his new novel, Lewis hopes to change racial perceptions about the black community and encourage other youth to follow their dreams. “To fling my arms wide, In some place of the sun, To whirl and to dance, Till the white day is done. Then rest at cool evening, Beneath a tall tree, While night comes on gently, Dark like me — That is my dream! To fling my arms...

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Canstruction competition provides help to local food pantry and challenges engineering creativity

A crowd of supporters gathered in the Rotunda at Milwaukee City Hall on December 6 for the judging and awards ceremony of Canstruction sculptures, an annual international charity competition. The Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center (JCC) partnered with Milwaukee City Hall and the Common Council to bring Canstruction back to Milwaukee. The exhibition was on display from December 2 to 7 at City Hall. The unique charitable effort challenged architects, engineers, and builders to design and create giant displays made entirely of canned food. Mayor Tom Barrett and Alderman Russell Stamper were judges of the sculptures,...

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B. Artin Haig: Milwaukee’s 104-year-old master photographer and his journey across lives and images

Known as B. Artin “Bob” Haig, the master photographer who has captured pictures of American presidents was born as Haig Artin Kojababian on August 1, 1914. With a career in images that lasted for decades, Haig took pictures all over the world, but is best known locally for his portraits of Milwaukee’s high society. Haig made his mark in the city during the late 1950s by photographing some of the biggest names in Milwaukee business, including the Uihleins of Schlitz Brewery and the Strattons of Briggs & Stratton. He has immortalized many prominent national figures such as the Rockefellers,...

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Site of the only documented lynching in Milwaukee designated as a County Landmark

The Milwaukee County Historical Society (MCHS) officially added two new Milwaukee County landmarks during its November 27 annual meeting, including the lynching site of George Marshall Clark. The Historical Society is the only organization empowered to designate landmarks for Milwaukee County. The public was invited to nominate new properties to be considered for 2018, with a May deadline. That was followed by a review board inspection and evaluation of the proposed sites, with a public hearing for the candidate sites in August. As a result of the deliberations, the two 2018 landmarks will be: Woman’s Club of Wisconsin, 813...

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Worst kids in history make this year’s First Stage show the best Christmas pageant ever

A fun and new musical adaptation of an audience favorite comes to First Stage this holiday season. The 90 minute live-stage performance of “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever: The Musical” runs from November 23 to December 26 at the Marcus Center’s Todd Wehr Theater, located at 929 N. Water Street in downtown Milwaukee Created by the talented husband and wife team of Jahnna Beecham and Malcolm Hillgartner and based on the play by Barbara Robinson, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever: The Musical is filled with catchy, 1960s-inspired original music and a delightful story that both young and old will...

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