Monday, January 1, 2018

On, Wisconsin!

Today I happened across an article describing how Wisconsin got a state song. The Journal Sentinel describes its origin as a UW football fight song (1909) (the words familiar to most of us) but the official words of the state song (1913) are different:

On, Wisconsin! On, Wisconsin!
Grand old Badger State!
We, thy loyal sons and daughters,
Hail thee, good and great.
On, Wisconsin! On, Wisconsin!
Champion of the right,
"Forward," our motto —
God will give thee might!

It's not every day that a governor signs a bill with brass-band accompaniment.

But Gov. Gaylord Nelson did on July 7, 1959 — which actually made sense, since he was signing into law the measure that made "On, Wisconsin!" the official state song.

At the time, Wisconsin was reportedly one of just 10 states that didn't have an official song. ....