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.

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This Day in Wisconsin History

  • October 31, 1947 - Soap Opera Star Deirdre Hall Born
    On this date Deirdre Hall, best known for her role as Dr. Marlena Evans on the long-running daytime televison soap opera , was born in . She has won five Best Actress awards from (1982-85,1995). She was also named Best Television Role Model and won the prestigious American Women in Radio and Television (AWRT) award in 1994. Her identical twin sister, Andrea Hall, has appeared on as Marlena's evil twin, Samantha. [Source: ]
  • October 31, 1819 - Alexander Williams Randall Born
    On this date , governor of Wisconsin, was born in Ames, New York. He gained state-wide recognition as one of Governor Bashford's attorneys during the famous . He served as governor from 1858 to 1862. After two terms, he was appointed by President Lincoln as Minister to the Papal State in Rome. He became the first Wisconsin citizen to be promoted to a cabinet position, serving as President Johnson's Assistant Postmaster General. and are both named after him. Alexander Williams Randall died on July 26, 1872, in Elmira, New York, where he is buried. [Source: by Nancy G. Williams, p.255]
  • October 31, 1915 - Ball park organist and Muzak executive Jane Jarvis born.
    Jarvis was the organist for the Milwaukee Braves baseball team during their heyday. She was also an executive with the Muzak Corporation, starting as a receptionist and rising to become a company executive responsible for programming. Jarvis engaged fellow jazz musicians to create soothing background tunes for sale to retail stores and offices. She retired from Muzak in 1978. She was born in Vincennes, Indiana, and was a classically trained musician. In 1954, while hosting a music program on WTMJ in Milwaukee ("Jivin' With Jarvis") and playing local nightspots, she was approached by the new Milwaukee Braves' management to be the ballpark organist. She held the post for the next 8 years before moving to New York City where she played the organ at Shea Stadium for the New York Mets 1964-1979. Jarvis died January 25, 2010, at the age of 94.
  • October 31, 1968 - Milwaukee Bucks Win First Game
    On this date the Milwaukee Bucks claimed their first victory, a 134-118 win over the Detroit Pistons in the . The Bucks were 0-5 at the time, and Wayne Embry led Milwaukee with 30 points. Embry became the first player in Bucks history to score 30 or more points in a regular season game. [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