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The Wakelys, Point Basse and Wisconsin As They Knew It

The Wakelys, Point Basse and Wisconsin As They Knew It Historic Point Basse has developed a teaching unit for fourth grade Wisconsin history. It focuses on history as experienced by settlers in Central Wisconsin. Robert and Mary Wakely, their family, the Citizens of Point Basse, and the people they had contact with are central to the story.

While there had been a trading post in the area since the early 1800s, Robert Wakely is given credit for founding the once bustling community. We have focused on what early settlers faced as they arrived on the frontier and started to settle in.

Each page has at least one graphic: a picture or a sidebar with information on a related topic. The sidebar may contain definitions of topic related vocabulary, a first person account of a person who may have lived at that time or pictures of tools used. Vocabulary words in the text, which might be new to the students, are printed in bold and defined at the bottom of the page. All materials are written at the fourth grade reading level.

The unit contains the text, discussion questions, activities, tests and test keys for each chapter. The purchase comes with the right to make classroom copies of these materials. The cost is $100 plus shipping and handling.

There are six chapters in the unit: each focusing on a different aspect of pioneer life.

Chapter 1 - They Came First:
The Trappers, The Explorers, The Priests, The Voyageurs
Wisconsin under the control of the French and British in its early stages of settlement. The development of the fur trade.

Chapter 2 - They Cut the Land:
The Lumbermen, The Lumberjacks, The Lumberjills
The advance of the lumber industry in the United States from the days when the trees belonged to the King through the development of lumbering in Wisconsin.

Chapter 3 - They Broke the Land:
The Farmers
The replacement of the lumberjacks by the farmer-families move to the frontier.

Chapter 4 - They Tamed the Land:
The Women
The role women played on the frontier.

Chapter 5 - They Crossed the Land:
On Foot, By Boat, By Wagon, By Train
The virgin wilderness traveled on foot and their trail marked. The development of transportation and its influence on economic development.

Chapter 6 - They Settled the Land:
The Wakelys
One hard-working family's influence on the development of the frontier.

The unit may be purchased from:

Historic Point Basse Inc
PO Box 295
Nekoosa, WI 54457

Book, text only, $30