As the Cold War gripped the world with fear of espionage and nuclear winter, everyday Wisconsinites found themselves embroiled in the struggle. For decades, the state’s nuclear missiles pointed to the skies, awaiting Soviet bombers. Joseph Stalin’s daughter sought refuge in the small town of Richland Center. With violence in Vietnam about to peak, a cargo ship from Kewaunee sparked a new international incident with North Korea. Manitowoc was ground zero for a Sputnik satellite crash, and four ordinary Madison youths landed on the FBI’s most wanted list after the Sterling Hall Bombing. Local author and chairman of the Midwest Chapter of the Cold War Museum Chris Sturdevant shares the tales of the Badger State’s role in this titanic showdown between East and West.
Written by Christopher Sturdevant