A Northwoods Moment in History

Ed “Strangler” Lewis

Oct 21, 2020

Professional wrestling is a popular form of entertainment in the United States for many people, and this includes many fans in the Northwoods. Modern wrestling is a choreographed entertainment rather than a true sport, and the individual most responsible for that distinction had a Northwoods connection. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

Wisconsin Historical Society

Today many people take the Oneida County Airport for granted. In the past, however, generating interest in aviation and air travel was an important goal for local civic boosters. In 1930, Rhinelander participated in an air race that significantly advanced this objective. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

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Today people living in Wisconsin’s Northwoods and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula look to each other as neighbors who share common interests. No one questions the boundary between the two regions, but in the past the border between the two states was a serious concern. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

Red Dot Potato Chips

Sep 30, 2020
wisconsin historical society

Many people of fond memories of Red Dot potato chips. While Red Dot was headquartered in southern Wisconsin, the company did have significant ties to the Northwoods. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

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David Collins, a student fulfilling a writing assignment in Ocie Kilgus’s English Comp class at Nicolet College, was curious about a bank robbery that took place in Laona during the 1950s. As it turns out, the robbery had an unusual twist. 

In past the Oneida County Fair brought in some of the biggest names in Country & Western music. These acts always drew the biggest crowds for the fair, but one year a particular singer brought her very own Rodeo to perform with her. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

Wisconsin Historical Society

Many young people today cannot name a Supreme Court Justice or identify their own Congressional Representative. Voter participation is lower in the U.S. than in any other Western Democracy. It was not always this way, and in the past Rhinelander made certain its young people were aware of their civic responsibilities. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

Pioneer Edward Walsh

Sep 2, 2020
wisconsin historical society

There are many stories of early Northwoods Pioneers. Most of us recall the lumbermen as being the first, but the tourist industry developed simultaneous to the logging industry, and early resort builders like Edward Walsh were key in the economic development of the Northwoods. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

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The Lac du Flambeau band of Lake Superior Chippewa have been an important part of Northwoods cultural history since the early eighteenth century. However, the tribe has not always been treated with the respect it has earned, and the era of allotment is a particularly painful memory. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

Wisconsin Historical Society

Most Rhinelander citizens take the Davenport Street Bridge for granted. It is simply something we pass over on our way into town. But the current bridge is not the first structure to span the river, and the first bridge in that location met with a tragic end. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

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World heavyweight boxing is not a sport often associated with the Northwoods. In the earliest years, a few lumberjacks participated in boxing. Some went on to become professionals, but to have the World Heavyweight Champion put on an exhibition bout in Rhinelander would be unheard of. Or would it? Historian Gary Entz has the story.

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For over a year, local historian Gary Entz has uncovered why many towns in the Northwoods are named what they are.

Some previous installments of A Northwoods Moment in History have included how the towns of Phelps, St. Germain, Sayner, and Lake Tomahawk got their names.

In this week’s installment, we hear how the town of Woodboro got its name.

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Enjoying a good movie has been a popular pastime in the Northwoods for many decades. Today many film goers take engaging music and dialog for granted. It was not always that way, and the transition from silent to sound films is worth remembering. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

wisconsin historical society

Many geographic regions, towns, and counties in the Northwoods have interesting name origins, but few are as intriguing as Langlade County. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

wisconsin historical society

Social deviance describes an action or behavior that violates societal norms. Deviant behavior that violates established codes of conduct often lands the offender in trouble, as happened with one Northwoods transient. Historian Gary Entz has the story.

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