Tag Archive | Native Americans

The Crazy Horse Memorial-Tribute to All Native American Tribes


When you are near the Crazy Horse Memorial

you will see a sign for a low power radio station describing what is going on there.

We tuned in, you can listen here. The drive up the Avenue of the Chiefs built our anticipation for a great visit!

Here is a short film giving an overview of this monumental project.

The project was began in 1948 by Sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski and the legacy continues today by his children.

Admission is $28 for per vehicle with more than 2 people.  That fee is waived during special events where food donations are accepted instead.

The grounds are beautiful with a great view of the carving-in-progress. There is a museum and the Laughing Water Restaurant where you can enjoy Indian Taco and other traditional Native American foods. We enjoyed a great dinner there! Pictured is the taco, Tatanka (Bison) Stew, and  fry bread with wojapi (warm berry sauce) for a yummy dessert!

Begin your self-guided tour of the extensive museum at the information desk, the people there are happy to answer your questions!

There are a great many rooms to explore, you can make a day of it here! The main deck is a great viewpoint of Crazy Horse, you can see all the action when work is being done. There is also a scale model of what it will look like when complete on the deck. This model is in the display room  behind me.

This room is the first one you see after coming off the main deck near the restaurant.

In this room is a bin of rocks from the monument that you can take for free!

The scale model showing what it will look like when finished. Al and I may not live long enough though to see that day unless they get a LARGE influx of money. This is being built entirely on donations.

Here are some other highlights in the rest of the building.

Inside of the teepee.


This was a surprise, a signed Packer football there 🙂

Korczak display room with artifacts from the family and early carvings.

A painting of Korczak at age 73.

This display room has a great many Native American artifacts from many tribes.

More to see downstairs.

It was thrilling seeing a real one on the way there!

We were reaching the conclusion of our tour.  As we prepared to go, we saw a bus taking people out to the base of the mountain. We were a little too tired to do that today, but planning on it next time.  

Aztalan Museum in Jefferson

10-6-12 and 5-16-14

You would never believe it, but a great city of Native Americans once lived in Wisconsin about 900 years ago.  We took a trip to Aztalan Museum  to learn more. Let’s visit the museum first.  It had just opened for the season only the day before, May 15.  It’s open between mid-May through September Thursday through Sunday from 12-4. Aztalan Historic Museum sign   Aztalan Historic site Aztalan Buildings right side The top photo is the buildings on the left as you enter the parking lot, bottom photo are buildings on the right.  The Aztalan Schoolhouse is across the street, we saw that last. Aztalan Schoolhouse We began our visit in the admissions building to pay our small admissions fee of $5 each to explore the site.  Deb Conlan, who was the docent there that day, said we we among the first visitors of the season, yaay! Deb Conlan and us She told us that the Lake Mills-Aztalan Historic Society would love more people to join them.  Also, more volunteers are needed to maintain the grounds on the site during the summer, or even just man the desk in the admissions building. Call 920-648-4632 for more details. We began our self-guided tour in the former Baptist Church (1852),  a museum since 1942.  Many interesting artifacts inside. Outside is a historic marker. Aztalan marker Aztalan Museum inside cropCrazy JugBeethoven bust

Next door was the Moravian Church-1861. It was not open but was able to get a view through the window.

Moravian Church   Moravian church marker Moravian Church inside   Just outside of the church is the “Princess” burial mound.  An Indian princess from the nearby Aztalan settlement was theorized to have been buried here.

Princess Burial Mound


Next was the Bornell cabin, set up like a general store.

Bornell Cabin

Bornell Cabin inside

The Pettey cabin once housed a family of 8!

Pettey Cabin 1843

Pettey cabin inside

Next to this home is the larger Zickert house (after 1867). Inside was an 1800’s kitchen display, also a bedroom. On a rock outside is a marker dedicated to Anne Pickett, founder of the first dairy co-op in Jefferson Co.

Zickert House

Anne Pickett marker


Zickert House kitchen

Zickert House bedroom


Hansen’s Granary, inside were many woodworking tools of days gone by.

Hansen's Granary


Hansen's Granary inside

The last building on the site was the schoolhouse. Very interesting to see how school used to be.

Aztalan schoolhouse inside

We had a great visit at the museum, we will be back later, hopefully to help them out as volunteers.


State Historical Museum in Madison

11-16 &  30-13

Wisconsin State Historical Museum

The Wisconsin State Historical Museum is downtown on the Capitol Square. In the museum are four floors of great artifacts of Wisconsin’s past.

Lets start our visit on the ground floor.  The gift shop is here with many wonderful items.  At this time of year a special display is up called “Tis the Season”,  Evergleam Aluminum Christmas Trees of all sizes and colors.  Beautiful!

Evergleam Trees

Evengleam Christmas trees

2nd Floor- 1st Settlers and Native American Tribes

This floor has a great many artifacts from the Native Americans that had large settlements in Wisconsin before Europeans came.  This is a replica of a home lived in at a settlement called Aztalan, now a state historic site and park. It is in Jefferson county.

Aztalan house

French explorer Jean Nicolet may have been the first European to have seen Wisconsin in 1634.  Here is a painting by Edwin Willard Deming depicting what his arrival may have looked like.

Jean Nicolet 1634

3rd Floor – Early Wisconsin Settlement by Europeans

Life on the frontier, pioneers making Wisconsin their own. Mining of lead became a big industry. Also a large group from Cornwall, England brought their stone quarrying skills to Mineral Point, their Pendarvis settlement. That is now a historic site.  Some of the masons came to Madison and built a house for someone, still occupied to this day.

Cornish-Built House in Madison

The lumber industry was and still is a big part of Wisconsin.


4th Floor- Late 19th-Early 20th Century

The rise of politics and it’s influence on the citizens of the state, as well as the women’s Suffrage Movement nearly a century ago.

Suffrage display

Governor Bob La Follette fought for the state to have fair legislation and a “transparent” government.   We recently saw his house in Madison, still occupied.

Bob LaFollette Governor in 1900

Bob LaFollette House


We hope you enjoyed your visit,  remember to stop by the gift shop for a unique gift. It helps support the museum’s continued operation.

Madison crock