Wisconsin was granted statehood on May 29, 1848 and, as of 2012, the state's population is over 5.7 million people. The state motto is "Forward," the state bird is the robin, the state tree is the sugar maple and the state flower is the wood violet. The state of Wisconsin is over 65,000 square miles in size, the capital city is Madison and the biggest city in the state is Milwaukee.
The origin of Wisconsin's name is a Native American word for the region's primary river. The name means "gathering of the water" and was originally spelled by French explorers as Miscous, Miskonsing, Mesconsin and then Ouisconsin. States that border Wisconsin include Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan and Iowa.
Wisconsin's nickname is the Badger State because its earliest white inhabitants were lead miners who burrowed into the hills rather than set up permanent housing. This action was a strategy to avoid wasting resources and time.
The Republican Party was established in Wisconsin in 1854. The move was in response to the Kansas-Nebraska Act, and was an effort by local citizens to fight against the expansion of slavery.
Wisconsin is home to professional baseball, basketball and sports teams, including the Brewers, the Bucks and the Green Bay Packers. The Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, the Wisconsin Dells and the Ice Age National Scientific Reserve are points of interest in the state.