Move the Capitol to Milwaukee
Getting Madison named the capital of Wisconsin in 1836 was difficult, requiring a lot of work and
maybe a little bribery. Once the decision was made all was not over. There were attempts to relocate
the capital city to Milwaukee several times.
1857 Gov Bashford “Some provision needed to be made” to better protect the State records than crowded firetrap that was the first Capitol building. Knowing that building a new Capitol could mean it being built at another location officials put together a plan for a new fireproof wing. The City Council approved a bond issue to pay for it. This new “wing” was actually designed to be the beginning of a completely new capitol.
1858 Legislators propose “temporarily” moving the State Government to Milwaukee while a new Capitol was designed and built. City offered free use of space in the new City Hall (but then did not actually let the Sate use it for free)
1870 At decade's dawn, as Madison continues to fend off efforts to move the capital to Milwaukee, a constant and valid criticism is the city's lack of a first-class hotel. The Park Hotel is the business community's response. In February 1870, during consideration of one more relocation bill, leading Madisonians seek state incorporation of the Park Hotel Company. The Assembly kills the relocation bill 55-31 on March 9, 1870, but the incorporation efforts continue. On March 18, 1870, the legislature charters Park Hotel Company; the great Founder Simeon Mills will become president, former governor Lucius Fairchild and former mayor Andrew Proudfit are among the directors.
Pg 39 & 63 Levitan.