Welcome to the South Wood County Historical Museum!

The Museum Exhibits are Open! 

Make plans to visit our traveling exhibit-

“Navajo Code Talkers”

During World War II, the United States Marine Corps sought to create a unique and unbreakable code. With the Navajo language, the code talkers coordinated operations in the Pacific theater, including the assault on Iwo Jima, without revealing any information to the enemy.

With a presentation by William Parker, the SWCHM Military Historian, on Sunday, June 4th, at 2 pm.

(Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday, 1-4 p.m.)

June 4th- 29th


“Ho-Chunk Nation Traveling Exhibit”

According to oral history, the Ho-Chunk people have been in this region since before the two ice ages, occupying the area around Green Bay in Wisconsin, reaching beyond Lake Winnebago to the Wisconsin River and the Rock River in Illinois. The tribe hunted, fished, gathered, and gardened. A spiritual people, the Ho-Chunk have always respected the land which they call home.

July 2-August 31

With a presentation by Josephine Lee, Director of the Ho-Chunk Nation Museum and Cultural Center, on Sunday, July 23rd, at 2 pm.

History of the South Wood County Historical Museum Building

On the site of Isaac’s boyhood home, Anton Billmeyer built Shadowlawn for Isaac Witter in 1907. The house was built on grounds consisting of 230 feet of frontage on Third Street and 230 feet on the Wisconsin River.

The house was built in the neoclassical style, consisting of 23 rooms, not including the large halls, and had a central vacuum system. An elevator was installed after Isaac became ill.

In 1947, Isaac’s brother-in-law, George W. Mead, purchased the Witter home and grounds for $15,000.00 and presented it to the city to house the T.B. Scott Public Library, which opened in 1948.

After the McMillan Memorial Library was built and opened in 1970, the building and land were deeded to the South Wood County Historical Corporation for the museum, which opened in 1972.

Board of Directors

Leon Schmidt, President

Phil Brown, Vice-President

Sarah Sigler, Secretary

Mary Anne Getzin, Treasurer

Page Casey Clark

Lori Brost

Robert Zimmerman

Pete Smart

Richard Bender

Kathy Daly

Jack Wesley

J. Marshall Buehler

Curious about books by Wisconsin Rapids City Historian Dave Engel (LHS ’63), other local authors, or the SWCHC publication Artifacts? Visit our “Publications” Tab!




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