Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Today in Wisconsin History

From the Wisconsin Historical Society, "On this day in Wisconsin History" (a favorite site of the staff at the Water Library):

1860 - Sinking of the Lady Elgin
On this date the steamship Lady Elgin was lost on Lake Michigan and was one of the lake's most tragic maritime disasters. The ship had been chartered by Milwaukee's Irish Union Guards who had been in Chicago attending a fund raiser in order to purchase weapons to arm their unit. Their ship was struck by an unlit lumber schooner and sank. At least 300 lives were lost, many from Milwaukee's Irish Third Ward community. [Source: History Just Ahead: A Guide to Wisconsin's Historical Markers edited by Sarah Davis McBride, p. 17]