History

American Experience: Sealab Premieres Feb. 12

Explore the depths of the ocean in an all new American Experience: Sealab premiering 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12 on Wisconsin Public Television.

Sealab tells the story of the U.S. Navy’s program that sought to answer the question of whether human life could survive on the ocean floor. The program, spearheaded by George Bond, a former doctor from Appalachia turned naval pioneer, as well as his team of “aquanauts,” tested the limits of human endurance and changed ocean exploration forever.

Read on to find out more about this incredible story!

Continue reading American Experience: Sealab Premieres Feb. 12

Celebrate African-American History Month 2019 with WPT

Any day is a great day to recognize the many contributions that African-Americans have made to American history and culture. But February offers special opportunities to celebrate and recognize African-Americans, both famous and not-so-famous, who have made a difference.

Read on for a selection of upcoming programs airing on WPT – and don’t forget our many offerings available anytime online!

Continue reading Celebrate African-American History Month 2019 with WPT

Hmong Food in Wisconsin

As we continue to celebrate the many food traditions that have developed throughout our state, we recognize the stories of Hmong families and extended clans who have made Wisconsin their home.

Lucy Lor’s story in Wisconsin Life‘s Food Traditions series is an inspiring example of how food can link different times and places in our lives – honoring both the new and the old.

We are excited to share another story from Wisconsin’s Hmong community. Tune in 8 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 18 for Lidia Celebrates America: A Heartland Holiday Feast.

Read about the segment, filmed with Wausau’s Latricia Thao and her family, in this Wausau Daily Herald article – then, keep reading for more spotlights on Hmong food and agriculture, and how people of all cultural backgrounds can enjoy them together.

Continue reading Hmong Food in Wisconsin

WPT Education’s Capitol Game Gets Top Score

This October, WPT Education was excited to introduce Jo Wilder and the Capitol Case, a free online video game set in and around the Wisconsin State Capitol, that assists educators in teaching social studies, while giving students the chance to be “history detectives.”

Nikki Lutzke, a teacher partner in the Parkview School District, said, “[Jo Wilder and the Capitol Case] brought learning to us concretely… and forever changed how this teacher views learning about and teaching history!”

Jo Wilder and the Capitol Case from WCER on Vimeo.

Read more about how this exciting project came to life – including the essential collaboration of students and teachers from around Wisconsin!

Continue reading WPT Education’s Capitol Game Gets Top Score

American Experience producer Sharon Grimberg discusses “The Circus”

Aerialist La NormaStep right up! American Experience: The Circus is a four-hour, two-part documentary airing 8 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, Oct. 8-9 on WPT. Exploring the colorful history of this distinctly American entertainment, this fascinating film includes extensive historical material from and about Wisconsin, the home of the famed Ringling Bros. and other major acts.

In our exclusive Q&A, writer/producer/director Sharon Grimberg shares her thoughts on the film’s production, as well as the circus itself.

Continue reading American Experience producer Sharon Grimberg discusses “The Circus”

Director’s Cut: Jim Theres, “The Hello Girls”

This week on Director’s Cut, it’s our pleasure to welcome the final guest of our 11th season: director Jim Theres, discussing his documentary The Hello Girls.

In a year which has seen some of the best guests and films we’ve ever had on our show, Theres is under serious pressure! But he rises to the challenge, bringing his A game in both his interview and his film.

They were known as the “Hello Girls” – American women fluent in French and English who answered the urgent call for telephone operators needed in France during World War I.

They took oaths to join the U.S. Army Signal Corps, underwent training by AT&T before boarding ships to Europe, heading to war before most of the American doughboys arrived in France, connected 26 million calls and ultimately proved to be a significant factor in winning the war.

And then they were forgotten.

Read on for more about this film, and about my interview with filmmaker Jim Theres.

Continue reading Director’s Cut: Jim Theres, “The Hello Girls”

You’re Invited to a Royal Wedding!

Aerial view of the wedding of Victoria and Albert from Victoria on MasterpieceFrom Victoria and Albert to Harry and Meghan, nobody does royal weddings like the BBC. Join our partners across the pond for five nights of front-row coverage – live from London! – leading up to live coverage of the wedding of Prince Harry of Wales and American actress Meghan Markle.

Each episode of Royal Wedding Watch unpacks the history, tradition and ceremony surrounding a royal wedding, as well as insight into the union of two very different families. Featuring experts such as historian Lucy Worsley and reporter Anita Rani, the program is hosted by Meredith Vieira and the UK’s Matt Baker.

Read on for all the details!

Continue reading You’re Invited to a Royal Wedding!

WPT Education Brings Hmong History to Wisconsin Classrooms

Becky Marburger

The Wisconsin Hometown Stories project offers a fantastic opportunity for in-depth exploration of the local histories and stories that showcase communities around our state.

WPT Education works side-by-side with teachers in each community to build content and pathways connecting students with the history and stories around them.

Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Eau Claire will premiere later in 2018. As we began our research in that region, an educator survey revealed the need for more digital learning resources – especially biographies and materials that highlight the Hmong community.

Read on to see how WPT’s work in Eau Claire is resulting in new, community-specific digital learning resources – including the history and culture of Hmong residents.

Continue reading WPT Education Brings Hmong History to Wisconsin Classrooms

Earth Day, Every Day – And All Through April on WPT

Wisconsin has a lot to celebrate as we think about Earth Day – now and all through the month of April. We’re the home of Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson and pioneering wildlife ecologist Aldo Leopold, as well as the members of Native nations who continue to care for the land they still inhabit.

Check out these suggestions for programs airing on WPT in the coming weeks – some of which are also available for viewing anytime online or on your digital device.

Read on for our top picks!

Continue reading Earth Day, Every Day – And All Through April on WPT

Top 5 Most-Watched Videos From Wisconsin Life’s Fifth Season

Season five of Wisconsin Life produced some of our most memorable stories yet. On our Facebook page, we had over 137,000 views from our top five most-viewed stories alone. In celebration of the completion of season five, we’ve compiled our top five most-watched stories: Continue reading Top 5 Most-Watched Videos From Wisconsin Life’s Fifth Season