Carl Baehr

Recent Articles

City Streets: Elliott Circle Is A Unique Oddity
City Streets

Elliott Circle Is A Unique Oddity

City’s only full-circle street near 58th and North has pie-shaped lots, oddly numbered addresses.

City Streets: The Dreadful Legacy of Charles Nash
City Streets

The Dreadful Legacy of Charles Nash

His greed led to the horrible Newhall House fire. Yet a street still bears his name.

City Streets: Meinecke Paid For Street Named After Him
City Streets

Meinecke Paid For Street Named After Him

The lasting legacy of toy importer and German immigrant Adolph Meinecke.

City Streets: Runaway Horses Plagued Vliet Street
City Streets

Runaway Horses Plagued Vliet Street

Killing and injuring many in the 19th century. Then the streetcar arrived.

City Streets: The Barons of Bay View
City Streets

The Barons of Bay View

Wealthy businessmen Stephen Clement and Eber Ward founded Bay View, named many streets.

City Streets: Auer Ave. Honors Eugenics Champion
City Streets

Auer Ave. Honors Eugenics Champion

Louis Auer did all he could to promote more births by the “superior” races.

City Streets: Villard Ave. Salutes City’s Transit History
City Streets

Villard Ave. Salutes City’s Transit History

So does Aldrich St. But these were two wildly different transportation companies.

City Streets: Why Such Strange Names?
City Streets

Why Such Strange Names?

Falling Heath? Fairy Chasm? Port Sunlight? A short history of town’s oddest names.

City Streets: Center St. Actually Named After a Person
City Streets

Center St. Actually Named After a Person

It was never the center of anything, but named after man who devised the “straight cut.”

City Streets: Reservoir Ave. Was Font of City’s Water
City Streets

Reservoir Ave. Was Font of City’s Water

And part of street, now named Glover, celebrates the freeing of famed fugitive slave.

City Streets: Cudahy’s Packed Avenues
City Streets

Cudahy’s Packed Avenues

Some cities name their streets after states or even wines, but Cudahy took a meatier approach.

City Streets: Whitnall Ave. Named After “Father” of Parks
City Streets

Whitnall Ave. Named After “Father” of Parks

And Gordon Park is named for his son.

City Streets: Wahl Ave. Named After “Grandfather” of Parks
City Streets

Wahl Ave. Named After “Grandfather” of Parks

Before Whitnall there was Christian Wahl, who helped create city’s parks system.

City Streets: Greenfield Ave and Bias Against Poles
City Streets

Greenfield Ave and Bias Against Poles

It was the northern border of city’s Polish community, which suffered horrible prejudice.

City Streets: The Poetic Legacy of Hackett Avenue
City Streets

The Poetic Legacy of Hackett Avenue

Residents objected to East Side street name, but were defeated by a poem.

City Streets: KK Is Bay View’s Main Street
City Streets

KK Is Bay View’s Main Street

With a rich history, labor unrest and streetcar deaths, going back to 1865.

City Streets: The 12 Segments of McKinley Avenue
City Streets

The 12 Segments of McKinley Avenue

Including Cold Spring area that held horse races and set world speed record.

City Streets: Downer Avenue and Two “Spite” Houses
City Streets

Downer Avenue and Two “Spite” Houses

Both tales of revenge have a connection to Judge Jason Downer.

City Streets: Humboldt Once Part of a Separate Village
City Streets

Humboldt Once Part of a Separate Village

Village of Humboldt, south of Capitol Dr., along Humboldt Plank Rd., lasted for decades.

City Streets: Lincoln Memorial Dr. Was Under Water
City Streets

Lincoln Memorial Dr. Was Under Water

A 20-year landfill project created the road and the city’s waterfront playground.

City Streets: Water Street Is Old Indian Trail
City Streets

Water Street Is Old Indian Trail

The first street built ran crooked, with gambling houses and other dens of vice.

City Streets: Streets With Multiple Names
City Streets

Streets With Multiple Names

Is it Canal or Fairview, McKinley or Knapp, Third or MLK Drive? Yep, it’s confusing.

City Streets: Ghost Markers of Milwaukee
City Streets

Ghost Markers of Milwaukee

College Ave., Court St., Pittsburgh Ave. and other names are for something gone -- or never there.

City Streets: Tiny Corcoran Ave. Raised a Big Star
City Streets

Tiny Corcoran Ave. Raised a Big Star

Cornelius L. Corcoran served as Third Ward’s alderman for 44 years, longer than any council member in history

City Streets: Famous Streets From Other Cities
City Streets

Famous Streets From Other Cities

Bourbon and Boylston streets, Euclid Ave., Santa Monica Blvd. and others can be found here.

City Streets: Jefferson Street Became Asphalt Showcase
City Streets

Jefferson Street Became Asphalt Showcase

Charles Pfister spent his own money to pave the street abutting his hotel in the new style.

City Streets: State Street Had Three Names
City Streets

State Street Had Three Names

And once was the chief connection to Watertown Plank Rd, a road made of oak planks.

City Streets: The Curious History of Franklin Place
City Streets

The Curious History of Franklin Place

Who is it really named after? And why the statue of a Scottish poet in a German city?

City Streets: Erie Street Was Gas Powered
City Streets

Erie Street Was Gas Powered

The Gas Works that began lighting the city in 1852 nearly caught fire in epic 1892 conflagration.

City Streets: Jackson St. Almost Had a Subway
City Streets

Jackson St. Almost Had a Subway

A mile-long underground railway was planned in 1890s.

City Streets: How Elizabeth St. Became National Ave.
City Streets

How Elizabeth St. Became National Ave.

Its name was changed in 1870s but many still used the old name for decades.

City Streets: Buffalo St. Was Where Black Man Lynched
City Streets

Buffalo St. Was Where Black Man Lynched

Short street had city’s only lynching and only one of an African American in state history.

City Streets: Yes, Tory Hill Is a Street
City Streets

Yes, Tory Hill Is a Street

It was named to commemorate the old Irish neighborhood obliterated by a freeway.

City Streets: Michigan Street Had a Mob Riot
City Streets

Michigan Street Had a Mob Riot

And a dispute involving the streetcar, which ultimately won the day.

City Streets: Van Buren Named After Democratic Vice-President
City Streets

Van Buren Named After Democratic Vice-President

Solomon Juneau was a Democrat and named many streets after members of his party.

City Streets: Highland Was Known as “Sauerkraut Boulevard”
City Streets

Highland Was Known as “Sauerkraut Boulevard”

It was also Johnson St. and Prairie St. before its name changed.

City Streets: Marshall Street Attracted Orphans
City Streets

Marshall Street Attracted Orphans

Not to mention delinquent boys. Yet it was named after a famed judge.

City Streets: The Short Swampy History of Chicago Street
City Streets

The Short Swampy History of Chicago Street

Built on a marsh, it became a magnet for immigrants.

City Streets: Astor Street Was For The “Bluebellies”
City Streets

Astor Street Was For The “Bluebellies”

The highest point between lake and river was where wealthiest people settled.

City Streets: Ogden and Lyon Almost Obliterated
City Streets

Ogden and Lyon Almost Obliterated

Park East Freeway would have run to lakefront, eliminating both streets.

City Streets: Paving Prospect Pitted Neighbor Against Neighbor
City Streets

Paving Prospect Pitted Neighbor Against Neighbor

In 1895, neighbors wrestled over an issue: should the street be paved with asphalt or wooden blocks?

City Streets: Farwell Developed Due To Streetcar
City Streets

Farwell Developed Due To Streetcar

And was named after the man who claimed he saved Vice-president Andrew Johnson.

City Streets: Wells Street Has Quite a History
City Streets

Wells Street Has Quite a History

That includes the impact of plutocrat Daniel Wells, Greta Garbo and an Irish/German riot.

City Streets: Broadway, the Street of Tragedies
City Streets

Broadway, the Street of Tragedies

Three of the most tragic incidents in city history happened on Broadway.

City Streets: Clybourn Was Once the City’s Main Street
City Streets

Clybourn Was Once the City’s Main Street

All the lake traffic got off at Clybourn and hotels and restaurants lined the street.

City Streets: The History of Milwaukee Street
City Streets

The History of Milwaukee Street

It's one of the original village streets dating back to 1835.

City Streets: Milwaukee’s Grand Avenue
City Streets

Milwaukee’s Grand Avenue

For much of the twentieth century, Wisconsin Avenue was the entertainment and retail center of the city.

City Streets: Cass Street, the Avenue of Plutocrats
City Streets

Cass Street, the Avenue of Plutocrats

That included the wealthiest man in Milwaukee history, richer than Bill Gates.

City Streets: The Curious History of St. Paul Avenue
City Streets

The Curious History of St. Paul Avenue

It was once Detroit and Fowler Streets, and before that was under water.

City Streets: The History of Kilbourn Avenue
City Streets

The History of Kilbourn Avenue

Formerly Biddle and Cedar Streets, it was renamed and widened into grand civic lane.

City Streets: The History of Plankinton Avenue
City Streets

The History of Plankinton Avenue

Once West Water St., it’s pretty short but long on history.

City Streets: The History of Juneau Avenue
City Streets

The History of Juneau Avenue

Once Division and Chestnut streets, it was consolidated into a tribute to city’s founder.

City Streets: The History of Mason Street
City Streets

The History of Mason Street

Named after a Michigan Territory governor, the street became Milwaukee’s Newspaper Row.