Our most recent project traced the coming of the Interstate Highway System to Wisconsin and the impact this had on the Black River Falls region. The I-System was the largest infrastructure program in American history and changed the nation in dramatic ways. The final stretch of the nearly 350 miles of I-94 in Wisconsin was the segment running from Tomah to Black River Falls and was completed in the late months of 1968.
Senior Intern Sam Lund served as our 20th FHP Intern and developing this project. Sam is an alumni of our AP US History program and a devoted student of history.
Sydney Sampson-Webb, class of 2019, was our 19th intern and she produced our story of the Vietnam War and various connections within our community. This was our 17th project overall and our 5th focusing on one of America’s major wars. World War II was our initial project in 2002. We explored the Korean War (2007), the Civil War (2010), and World War I (2014) in subsequent years.
Sydney did a terrific job with the project and it now studying marketing at UW- Milwaukee.
Our 15th project focused on the life and times of Frances Perry (1897-1996). Perry was born on a farm in the Kenyon Valley, taught in one-room schools prior to World War I, graduated from Columbia College of New York in the late 1920s, and returned to Wisconsin, living the humble life of a farm-wife and town librarian. From her days as a teenage schoolteacher, Perry developed a fascination for Ho-chunk language and culture and was instrumental in helping to identify hundreds of photographs that document the lives of Ho-Chunk residents of our region. We interviewed several people who knew Frances Perry while researching local archives at the Jackson County Historical Society and the Jackson County History Room. Senior Michaela Custodio served as project intern in 2015-16. As a result of this project, we developed a “Shared History Wall” at the high school highlighting several of our projects.