The Bayfield County Historical Society (BCHS) is an affiliate of the Wisconsin Historical Society. There are 11 Chapters that make up the umbrella organization of the BCHS. The Chapters are Barnes Area Historical Assn., Bayfield Heritage Assn, Cable/Namakagon Historical Soc., Cornucopia Historic Green Shed Museum, Drummond Historical Soc., Eileen Area Historical Soc., Mason Area Historical Soc., Oulu Historical Soc., Port Wing Historical Soc., Washburn Area Historical Soc., and Western Bayfield County Historical Soc.  Chapter memberships include membership in the Bayfield County Historical Society and receipt of the organization’s newsletter, “Historical Happenings.”  

 A book of the first 10 years of our "Historical Happenings" newsletters is now available. This book is a compilation of published newsletters from 1980 through 1989.  It includes many stories, maps, and photos that capture the local history of Bayfield County, Wisconsin.

To order a book, please print and use the order form.

This Day in Wisconsin History

  • June 30, 1951 - Final Line of Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Co. Abandoned
    On this date the final line of the was abandoned. At one time, the company's system extended west to Madison, north to Sheboygan, and south to Kenosha. [Source: edited by Sarah Davis McBride, p. 29]
  • June 30, 1862 - (Civil War) Battle of White Oak, Virginia
    The Battle of White Oak was fought during the Peninsular Campaign in Virginia. The 5th Wisconsin Infantry and Co. G of the 1st U.S. Sharpshooters took part.
  • June 30, 1940 - Babe Wins in Wauwatosa
    On this date Babe Didrikson beat Lucille Mann of Milwaukee, in the 36-hole final at the Women's Western Open professional golf tournament at Blue Mound Country Club in Wauwatosa. [Source: ]
  • June 30, 1966 - National Organization for Women Founded
    On this date the National Organization for Women was founded by 28 women attending the in Washington, D.C. One of these women was Sparta, Wisconsin native Kathryn Clarenbach. At the time, Clarenbach was head of the Wisconsin Commission on the Status of Women. Kathryn Clarenbach was elected NOW's first Chair of the Board and Betty Friedan, NOW's first President. The National Organization for Women was first housed in Clarenbach's faculty office at UW-Madison campus. NOW's first organizing conference was held four months later in Washington, D.C. [Source: ]



Originally named La Pointe County in 1848, Bayfield County was renamed on April 12, 1866 in honor of Henry Wolsey Bayfield, a British Rear Admiral in the Royal Navy who surveyed Lake Superior in 1823-24.


Bayfield County Historical Society - PO Box 581 - Washburn, WI 54891