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The history, the people and the stories of the Upper Midwest



Second Friday Lecture – The Last Depot: A Civil War Sketch

Friday, January 13  |  12pm  |  Presenter: Mark Gormican

The Last Depot is a 90-minute dramatization concerning a Union Civil War veteran, L.J. Nelson, 21st Wisconsin, and his return to Andersonville Prison thirty-one years after the death of his messmate, Sgt. James Torbert of the 6th Wisconsin. The action takes place at Torbert’s gravesite in the National Cemetery, a few hundred years from where the infamous prison stood. Nelson reminisces about the war, the bond formed between the two men, and how Nelson’s life unscrolled after his return home. Though a monologue, the script implies a dialogue between the two mirroring their different personalities and dispositions.



Family Activity Days – Kindness Week Community Quilt

Sunday, January 15 and Tuesday, January 17 – Saturday, January 21  |  12pm – 5pm 

Throughout Kindness Week visitors are invited to stop by the Civil War Museum Resource Center to decorate a fabric square depicting how you practice kindness everyday. Share a kindness quote, send someone a helpful message, or share your artist talents with a drawing.



Workshop – Rosey’s Buckeye Legion: Ohio at Stones River

Wednesday, January 25  |  6:30pm – 8:00pm  |  Instructor: Dan Masters  |  $12 ($15 non-members)  |  Register Here

Soldiers from Ohio comprised more than a quarter of the Army of the Cumberland at the Battle of Stones River. Dan Masters will explore who these men were and relate a few of their stories from the battle.



Workshop – Coffee and Civil War

Saturday, January 28  |  10am – 11:30am  |  Instructors: Shannon Cheney, Doug Dammann, Steve Acker  |  $16 ($20 non-members)  |  Register Here

No food or drink meant as much to Civil War soldiers as coffee. They talked about it, wrote about it and dreamed about it. Based on firsthand soldier accounts, we will explore the different methods soldiers used to obtain and brew their coffee, and discuss what they used as substitutes when coffee beans were scarce. Take a curated guided tour of the Fiery Trial gallery, watch demos of how to brew alternative Civil War coffee drinks, and taste local blends.



Media Club – The Lincoln Conspiracy by Brad Meltzer

Wednesday, February 8  |  6:30pm  |  Location: Ashling on the Lough  |  $8 ($10 non-members)  |  Register Here

The story of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865 is widely known, but few people are aware of the original conspiracy to kill him four years earlier in 1861 on his way to Washington, D.C. for his first inauguration.  Please read the book and come prepared to discuss with the group.



Second Friday Lecture – A Game of Whist: An Alleged Sheboygan Connection to Lincoln’s Assassin

Friday, February 10  |  12pm  |  Presenter: Steven Rogstad

Helen Brainard Cole was one of Sheboygan’s leading celebrities in the early 1900s. Through numerous interviews she repeatedly told her reminiscences about being a nurse during the Civil War at a Washington, D.C. hospital, where she frequently interacted with President Lincoln during his hospital visits. Her tales of seeing Lincoln became legendary. Another involved her association with Lincoln’s murderer, John Wilkes Booth, who she claimed she played cards with just weeks prior to the assassination. This program dives into many questions surrounding these stories. What did she remember of her frequent interactions with Booth? Did he reveal anything? How did Helen Cole become an intimate of America’s most beloved president and most hated presidential assassin?



Civil War Medical Weekend with the 17th Corps Field Hospital Group

Saturday, February 18  *  10am – 4pm  |  Sunday, February 19  *  12pm – 4pm

Explore the medical care provided to soldiers during the Civil War.  Members of the 17th Corps Field Hospital, the largest Civil War Medical unit in the Midwest, will have interactive displays highlighting surgery, nursing care, pharmaceuticals and embalming. Activities include:

  • Watch surgical demonstrations
  • View hundreds of original surgical instruments up close
  • Hear about the different diseases that affected soldiers
  • Learn how women nursed the wounded and sick
  • “Make pills” with Doctor Milam using an 1800s pill roller


Medical Weekend Program – The Long Civil War: Living with Disability in Gilded Age America

Saturday, February 18  |  1pm  |  Presenter: Dr. James Marten, Marquette University

Dr. James Marten will explore case studies of veterans of the 6th Wisconsin to examine a variety of challenges faced by survivors of the war and their families.




Family Activity Day – Healing Herbs

Saturday, February 18  |  1pm – 3pm

Stop by the Resource Center to learn about the different plants that were used during the Civil War to help soldiers and citizens when medical resources were low. Then plant your own healing herb to take home.



Antebellum and Civil War African American Experience

Saturday, February 25  |  1pm  |  Presenter: Mike Medhurst

Renowned image collector and historian Mike Medhurst will take a visual look into the lives of African American soldiers and civilians before and during the Civil War. See one-of-a-kind photographs from his collection and others.



SPARK! Program

This monthly program for individuals in early to mid-stages of memory loss and their caregivers engages participants in lively conversations, storytelling, object handling and other multi-sensory activities. Space is limited so reservations are appreciated. For more information or to register, please call 262-653-4432 or send an email to [email protected]


Civil War Poetry and Literature

Friday, January 20  |  2pm – 3:30pm

Some of America’s greatest poets and authors wrote during the Civil War. Read some of their works and create your own poetry.


Civil War Clothing and Uniforms

Friday, February 17  |  2pm – 3:30pm

Civil War soldiers wore many kinds of uniforms and used many kinds of equipment. Handle and try on replicas of these items including jackets, hats, shoes, belts and knapsacks.



Sensory Friendly Days

Sensory Friendly Days give visitors of all ages with complex developmental disabilities, sensory sensitivities, or on the autism spectrum a safe, comfortable environment to explore the museum exhibits during special hours before the museum opens to the general public. Where possible, our lights will be dimmed and the sound turned off. Signage will be posted for those areas in which we are unable to turn off the sound or there may be other sensory triggers. Trained staff will be available to help visitors navigate the museum and offer supportive resources (noise-cancelling headphones, fidgets, weighted blankets, quiet spaces), as well as opportunities for sensory engagement during your exploration of the museum.

Kenosha Public Museum:  Saturday, October 15  |  9am – 10am

Civil War Museum:  Saturday, November 12  |  9am – 10am

Dinosaur Discovery Museum:  Saturday, December 10  |  11am – 12pm




Click here to watch past lectures on YouTube