The new glassy museum of the Société historique would open a window on the Place du Capitole | Local government


Funding for the new museum is also fixed.

In 2018, the state informed the Historical Society that if it could raise $ 30 million, the state would return the remaining $ 70 million to the museum. The greater of $ 120 million includes transition costs and an endowment.

New pledges from philanthropists Jerome Frautschi and Pleasant Rowland, which bring their combined giving to $ 16.6 million, brought total private fundraising to $ 34.9 million, exceeding the amount the company needed. to raise to release state funds.

“Thanks to Pleasant and Jerry’s generosity, we are once again indebted to them for their incredible support of the Wisconsin History Museum Project,” said Julie Lussier, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Historical Foundation.

A new vision

The Historical Society, founded in 1846, has one of the largest collections of North American historic goods in the country and manages 12 museums and sites. But its flagship museum has been housed in the undersized, 42,000-square-foot former Wolff Kubly hardware building at 30 N. Carroll St. since the mid-1980s.

Fans have been considering a new museum for more than two decades.

Historical museum - aerial view

The Wisconsin Historical Society intends to develop a new museum on its current site, bottom center, and two properties to the left at 20 and 22 N. Carroll St. Grace Episcopal Church, top left, the building Nine-story churchill next to the church, the Hovde tower, the central rear and the properties to the right are not part of the project site.


The Historical Society, the Mohses and developer Hovde Properties, which owns the historic Churchill Building, 16 N. Carroll St., and other neighborhood properties, have long viewed their holdings as the site of a joint redevelopment with a new museum and spaces that could have been the largest project in the city’s history with total costs approaching $ 255 million.


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