“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Mosinee in Marathon County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

First Workers’ Compensation Law

First Workers' Compensation Law Marker image. Click for full size.
Courtesy of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development
1. First Workers' Compensation Law Marker
Inscription. The Wisconsin Workmen's Compensation Act of 1911 assured victims of work-relat­ed accidents or illnesses just compensation regardless of fault. With this law, enact­ed on May 3, 1911, Wisconsin became the first state to have a constitutional system for providing medical expenses, wage loss payments, or death benefits to employ­ees or their families. The law is regarded as a pioneering act of social legislation and a major accomplishment of Wisconsin's progressive movement.

On September 1, 1911, the date the law became fully effective, a mutual insurance company began operations in a one-room office in downtown Wausau. The company, which was formed by a group of central Wisconsin businessmen as a means of meeting their responsibilities under the new law, is today known throughout the world as Wausau Insurance Companies.

The purchaser of the first policy issued by the fledg­ling insurer was the Mosinee Paper Corporation, then known as Wausau Sulphate Fibre Company. That contract is recognized as the nation's first valid workers' compensation policy.
Erected 1985 by the Wisconsin Historical Society. (Marker Number 274.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the Wisconsin Historical Society marker series.
First Workers' Compensation Law Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, September 2, 2009
2. First Workers' Compensation Law Marker
The marker was originally in a wayside area along I-39/U.S. Hwy 51, south of Central Wisconsin Airport in Mosinee, Wisconsin. When the highway was upgraded, the wayside was closed, and the marker removed. It has been stored in the back hallway of the Marathon County Historical Society ever since.
Marker has been confirmed missing. It was likely located near 44° 46.233′ N, 89° 40.744′ W. Marker was near Mosinee, Wisconsin, in Marathon County. Marker could be reached from Interstate 39 at milepost 178, one mile south of State Highway 153, on the right when traveling north. Click for map. Marker was at a highway wayside that was permanently closed as a cost saving measure. Marker was in this post office area: Mosinee WI 54455, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 miles of this location, measured as the crow flies. Joseph Dessert Library (approx. 1.8 miles away); John Baptiste DuBay (approx. 4.6 miles away); Du Bay Trading Post (approx. 6.6 miles away); Fallen Soldiers Memorial (approx. 8.5 miles away); Wisconsin's First Home-Built Flying Machine (approx. 9.6 miles away); Monadnocks (approx. 10.4 miles away); Rib Mountain State Park (approx. 10.4 miles away); Ancient Ripples (approx. 10.4 miles away).
More about this marker. Wausau Insurance Companies is now known as Liberty Mutual Insurance Company. Mosinee Paper Corporation is now known as Wausau-Mosinee Paper Corporation.
Also see . . .
1. Historical Summary of Workers' Compensation Laws. (Submitted on April 11, 2009.)
2. Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Timeline History: Wisconsin Industrial Commission. (Submitted on April 13, 2009.)
Additional comments.
1. Marker Found!
The First Workers' Compensation Law state historical marker has been found at the Marathon County Historical Society, 410 McIndoe St., Wausau, WI, 54401. Approximate location is 44°57.8'N, 89°37.5'W
    — Submitted March 29, 2010, by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin.

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Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 1,458 times since then and 113 times this year. This page was the Marker of the Week Photos:   1. submitted on .   2. submitted on , by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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