The Wisconsin Veteran's Museum in Madison aims to educate the public on the role that Wisconsin citizenry had in the military history of America past, present, and future. It’s a place of commemoration, acknowledgement, and affirmation that tells the proud history of the sacrifices made by everyday people in the pursuit of freedom.
The exhibitions are overseen by Mike Telzrow, the museum’s director and veteran of the US Coast Guard. He knows the business side of the operation just as intimately as he knows the military and graduated from the University of Central Florida with a master’s degree in public history and museum studies. He’s been working in some form with museums for about 16 years, and this is his biggest project and passion yet.
Exhibitions and Artefacts
Throughout the year, the museum offers a varied and educational roster of interesting exhibitions, talks, and collections. What is actually on display often changes, but you can always expect the core and heart of the place to remain the same, namely their focus on the bravery and commendable actions of Wisconsin's own. On the wall “Wisconsin Remembers” you can see a face for every name of those who have served their country; the Wisconsin citizenry have done their duty and have been immortalised for their service. There are other exhibits like this as well as the immense artefact collection. The museum has collected over 26,000 pieces of wartime memorabilia. Spanning the decades from items of the Civil War all the way to nicknacks brought back from Iraq and Afghanistan, it’s an eye-opening look at what military life actually looked like.
The museum is also visited by touring exhibitions and hosts temporary exhibitions. In April 2017, the museum opened a centennial look at World War I; this is a year-long exhibition that takes an in-depth and personal look at the impact and history of the war. There will also be a symposium on the subject, inviting historians, guest speakers, and others to come together in October for a day of analysis, speeches, and information.
The museum offers scheduled tours, often hosted by the veterans themselves, meaning you can visit the museum and experience the exhibits with an extremely personal perspective. Otherwise, you can take your own self-guided tour while the kids go on the website and download a scavenger hunt booklet that makes the museum a little more interactive and accessible for them.
Admission to the museum is free of charge; there is the chance to donate voluntarily and you may be encouraged to do so, but apart from this, there is no cost.
The museum is open all year round Tuesday to Saturday from 9:00am to 4:30 pm. During April to September, they are open Sundays from 12:00pm to 4:00pm. Usually, the museum is closed Sundays and Mondays. They are also closed on public state holidays such as Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving, July 4th, New Year’s Day, New Year’s Eve, Christmas Day, and Christmas Eve.
30 West Mifflin Street, Madison, WI 53703, Phone: 608-267-1799