Cream City Chronicles: Stories of Milwaukee’s Past (Paperback)

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Cream City Chronicles is a collection of lively stories about the people, the events, the landmarks, and the institutions that have made Milwaukee a unique American community. These stories represent the best of historian John Gurda’s popular Sunday columns that have appeared in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel since 1994. Find yourself transported back to another time, when the village of Milwaukee was home to fur trappers and traders. Follow the development of Milwaukee’s distinctive neighborhoods, its rise as a port city and industrial center, and its changing political climate. From singing mayors to summer festivals, from blueblood weddings to bloody labor disturbances, the collection offers a generous sampling of tales that express the true character of a hometown metropolis.

About the Author

John Gurda is a Milwaukee-born writer and historian who has been studying his hometown since 1972. He is the author of twenty-one books, including histories of Milwaukee-area neighborhoods, churches, and industries. He is also a photographer, lecturer, and local history columnist for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Gurda is an eight-time winner of the Wisconsin Historical Society s Award of Merit. The common thread in all his work is an understanding of history as why things are the way they are. "

Praise For…

“John Gurda begins with recent events in Milwaukee's history and finds their past origins. His accounts of facts of the past are treated sensitively, and he interprets their meaning with unique observations. These stories will last as long as there is a Milwaukee.” (Frank Zeidler, Former Mayor of Milwaukee)

“The name John Gurda is synonymous with Milwaukee history. . . . Cream City Chronicles is perfect for classroom use or for anyone interested in Milwaukee history delivered in small, digestible bites. I recommend it highly.” (Timothy L. Ericson, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)

“John Gurda's Cream City Chronicles is not only a richly evocative history of the city of Milwaukee but, in the tradition of the great cultural geographers of generations' past, is also a reflection of the uniqueness of place. . . . Gurda's stories present not merely the outline but the essence of a proud and ever changing city.” (David McDaniel, Assistant Professor of History, Carroll College)

“No Milwaukee writer today better knows this city's yesterdays, and no one more clearly explains how what was then led to what is now. Cream City Chronicles is aptly named; these snapshots, like handsome bricks stacked one on another, build an enduring portrait of Milwaukee.” (Dennis McCann, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

"No living person knows more about Milwaukee's past than John Gurda, and Cream City Chronicles readily displays his gifts as a historian and a writer. . . . Cream City Chronicles is must reading for anyone who truly wants to understand and appreciate Milwaukee's rich heritage." (James Marten, Professor of History, Marquette University)

"This book of newspaper columns penned by Gurda is a perfect complement to The Making of Milwaukee. Instead of trying to tell it all, these essays focus on the interesting, the unique and the important. Fascinating tidbits that can be read sporadically or in one sitting." (Bobby Tanzilo,

2007 Outstanding Achievement Award Winner from the Wisconsin Library Association
2006 First Place in the Humor Category from Midwest Independent Publishers Association Book Awards
Product Details
ISBN: 9780870207587
ISBN-10: 087020758X
Publisher: Wisconsin Historical Society Press
Publication Date: February 11th, 2016
Pages: 320
Language: English