Wisconsin Geological Society History

Galena is the primary ore mineral of
              lead. Worked for its lead content as early as 3000BC, it
              is found in ore veins with sphalerite, pyrite,
              chalcopyrite, fahlore etc., and in sedimentary rocks as
              beds or impregmentations. The crystals are bright when
              fresh but often receive a dull tarnish after exposure to

In the midst of the Great Depression of the 1930's, the director of the Milwaukee Public Museum hired people in 1935 to create earth science exhibits. These Works Progress Administration (WPA) employees started meeting outside working hours in their homes to discuss the exhibits. In February 1936, they formed the Wisconsin Geological Society, which was allowed to meet the first Monday of each month at the Museum. In 1940, the Society was one of the three founding clubs of the Midwest Federation of Mineralogical and Geological Societies (MWF). In 1947, the Wisconsin Geological Society, Inc. was incorporated under the laws of the State of Wisconsin as a non-profit, non-stock corporation.

WGS awards scholarships annually to UW-Milwaukee Geo-Science students.
Donations are tax deductible.

Did you know ?

  • Wisconsin once had active volcanoes and mountains that would rival today's Alps?
  • General Ulysses S. Grant's tomb is made of red granite, Wisconsin's State Rock, and was  quarried from Montello Wisconsin.
  • Galena is Wisconsin's State Mineral and the mining boom in the 1800s ultimately led to Wisconsin's nickname of The Badger State.