28th Annual Local History Series

Brown County Central Library Auditorium
Thursdays, September 8 – October 27, 2016
7:00 – 8:30 p.m.

515 Pine Street, Downtown Green Bay
Free parking after 6 p.m.


Hearing Loop Logo

The Central Library’s lower level auditorium and meeting rooms are now equipped with a hearing loop.  When a hearing aid user selects the “T-coil” setting, the listener receives a clear signal without any background noise resulting in improved speech understanding.



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Thursday, September 8

Forces of Change: Events that Led to the Creation of the Green Bay Fire Department, 1836-1895
with Green Bay Metro Fire Department Lt. David Siegel


Major events cause action.  Learn about the “Forces of Change” that turned a volunteer force into a full-time paid department.  Lt. David Siegel of the Green Bay Metro Fire Department and author of “Forces of Change” presents. Three years of research and documentation of the early history of the fire department has resulted in the completion of his book on the early history of the fire department.


Lt. David Siegel is a 19-year veteran of the Green Bay Metro Fire Department serving as a fire fighter and paramedic.   He graduated from UW-Madison with a B.S. in Biochemistry and an M.S. in Pharmacology.  David also holds a B.S. in Fire Science from the University of Cincinnati.





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Thursday, September 15

African Americans in 19th Century Northeast Wisconsin
with Professor Victoria Tashjian
There has been a continuous African American presence in Northeast Wisconsin since shortly after the arrival of French fur traders, though this history is often forgotten today.  Victoria Tashjian will address a near-lost strand of local history, drawing upon the rich sources of information available in area archives to reconstruct the history of African American settlement here.


Victoria Tashjian received her Ph.D. from Northwestern University and teaches African history and women’s and gender studies at St. Norbert College in De Pere, where she has been a member of the faculty since 1992.




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Thursday, September 22

Million Dollar Historical Organization – the Earned
Legacy of the Green Bay & De Pere Antiquarian Society
with Carol Jones, 40-year member of the Antiquarian Society

The Society has preserved, purchased and protected many of the most important cultural artifacts of the community.  Over the last 93 years there have been many worthwhile projects which have benefited the community. Learn how it all started, the projects and the characters involved.


Carol Jones is a Green Bay native, retired from the Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce in 2006.  In her retirement she has taken on volunteering with great passion.  A forty year member of the Antiquarian Society and a past Governor, she has spearheaded a number of Antiquarian Society projects herself, including “Step Back: a Vintage Fashion Show & Pictorial Social History of Green Bay & De Pere from 1900-1960”.




 once-in-a-great-city - david maraniss

Thursday, September 29

Once in a Great City: A Detroit Story
with Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author David Maraniss
Pulitzer Prize winner David Maraniss will discuss his latest book which focuses on Detroit in 1963.  The book captures a city at its pinnacle, which reflected the spirit of  the entire country. The city’s leaders were among the most visionary in America: grandson of the first Ford, Henry Ford II; influential labor leader Walter Reuther; Motown’s founder Berry Gordy; the Reverend C.L. Franklin and his daughter Aretha; Governor George Romney, and others.  “Once In a Great City” shows that the shadows of collapse were evident even then.


This is David Maraniss’ fourth appearance at the Brown County Library; his first appearance was with the release of When Pride Still Mattered: A Life of Vince Lombardi.  
David Maraniss was born in Detroit and raised in Madison.  He is an associate editor at the Washington Post.  Other books by Maraniss include; First in His Class: A Biography of Bill Clinton; Rome 1960: The Olympics that Stirred the World; Barack Obama: The Story; Clemente: The Passion and Grace of Baseball’s Last Hero; and They Marched into Sunlight: War and Peace, Vietnam and America, October 1967.  David and his wife Linda live in Washington, D.C. and Madison, WI. 


Copies of Once In a Great City: a Detroit Story will be available for purchase and signing.


Thursday, October 6 

Presentation of the 2016 Governor’s Award for Archival Advocacy

The Wisconsin Historical Society, in association with the Wisconsin Historical Records Advisory Board, selected Mary Jane Herber as the recipient of this year’s award. She is recognized for her, “dedication to the community, her tremendous knowledge of local history, her belief that people should know their heritage, and above all, her years of high-quality service.”

5:00 – 6:30 pm  Reception
6:45 pm Award presentation
7:00 pm History Program
(see below)


 Fort Howard

Thursdays, October 6 & 13

Fort Howard – The Site, the Archaeology, and the History
with Kevin Cullen, Tim Brumm, and Les Van Horn
With the establishment of Fort Howard at La Baye in August of 1816, the United States made its first formal appearance in Green Bay.  Over many years there has been extensive research about the location; recently there have been archaeological finds and there is plenty of history about the establishment of the actual Fort and the structures which were built on the west side of the Fox River.


Kevin Cullen, Deputy Director of the Neville Public Museum, was born and raised in Ireland, yet educated in Wisconsin. He holds a Master’s degree in Anthropology and Museum Studies from UW-Milwaukee.


Tim Brumm earned a B.A. in History at UWGB. He has held various roles at Heritage Hill State Historical Park including interpreter, education manager and researcher on the establishment of Fort Howard and its buildings.  He currently teaches middle school history in Appleton.


Les Van Horn retired as Brown County Surveyor in 2002. Les has served as President of NEW Chapter of the WI Society of Land Surveyors (1979) and President of the WI Society of Land Surveyors (1985) from whom he received the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016.   He is past President of the WI County Surveyors Association (1981-1984).  He received the Governors Commendation for Outstanding Service in 1991 after serving as chairman of the WI Land Information Board.   He owns Van Horn & Van Horn Surveying with his wife, Lisa.



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Thursday, October 20
Note: New time! Due to the Packers/Bears game, this program will begin promptly at 6:00 pm

Wisconsin on the Air: 100 Years of Public
Broadcasting in the State that Invented It

with author Jack Mitchell and WPR host Jim Fleming
Author Jack Mitchell centers his new book around the implementation of the “Wisconsin Idea” philosophy that drove its development and still sets its course.  Mitchell will
introduce the personalities and philosophies, funding challenges, original programming and pioneering technology that gave us public broadcasting.


Jack Mitchell developed the groundbreaking news magazine, All Things Considered, at National Public Radio before becoming the head of Wisconsin Public Radio.  As Director of Wisconsin Public Radio for 21 years, Mitchell led the most extensive and successful state or university public radio system in the country.  He initiated the transition from the Wisconsin Educational Radio Network into Wisconsin Public Radio, which serves a statewide audience with two networks.


Jim Fleming, host of “Chapter a Day” for more than thirty years, will also be part of the program.  Jim Fleming was born in Madison, Wisconsin and grew up in Champaign, Illinois.  As an undergraduate he volunteered for Wisconsin Public Radio.  In 1974 he began his formal career with WPR and in 1975 became a co-host on WPR’s “Morning Report.”  


Copies of Wisconsin on the Air, published by the Wisconsin Historical Society Press will be available for purchase.



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Thursday, October 27

Enduring Food Traditions: Wisconsin Supper Clubs, Small Town Cafes, and Church Socials

with Food Historian and Green Bay native, Terese Allen

For a feast of from-scratch, Wisconsin specialties, plus large helpings of camaraderie and local history, there’s nothing like supper clubs, downtown diners and community meals.  If you think of our state as just a “meat and potatoes” region, think again: the state’s ethnic and agricultural diversity is revealed and celebrated at booyah picnics and brat cookouts, and in dining establishments that serve up such iconic fare as fish fries, dream pies and rib-eye steaks.  Allen explores the evolving stories and multi-layered meanings behind the state’s most beloved repositories of Dairyland culture.


Terese Allen has written about Wisconsin’s food traditions and culinary culture, including the award-winning books The Flavor of Wisconsin and The Flavor of Wisconsin for Kids.  She is food columnist for Edible Madison and Edible Door County magazines, co-founder of the Culinary History Enthusiasts of Wisconsin (CHEW) and a director of REAP Food Group, a cutting-edge food and sustainability organization in southern Wisconsin.


Copies of The Flavor of Wisconsin will be available for purchase. The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.  Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country