Kerry Trask

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Kerry A. Trask (born October 17, 1941) is an American historian and author. Trask has worked as a history professor at the University of Wisconsin Manitowoc for more than thirty years. Trask was also the Democratic candidate for the Wisconsin State Assembly from the 25th District in the 2010 general election.


Kerry Trask was born in Orillia, Ontario, to Victor Arnold and Lillian Trask. He worked his way through college in steel foundries, dairy farms, and as a ranger with the Ontario Department of Lands and Forests. Trask earned his B.A. in American History, from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota.[1] He went on to earn his M.A. and Ph.D. in American History from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.[1] Shortly after earning his Ph.D. in American History, Trask joined the faculty of the University of Wisconsin Manitowoc.[1]

During his 36 years at the UW Manitowoc, Trask served as history professor, History Department chair for all 13 University of Wisconsin Colleges, interim dean for the University of Wisconsin Sheboygan, chair of the Appeals and Grievances Committee for the UW Colleges, a member of the Board of Advisors to the UW System’s Institute on Race and Ethnicity. He was also a member of the AFL-CIO Academic Rights and Freedom Committee. He was named professor emeritus of history at the University of Wisconsin Manitowoc, and is a fellow of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters,[2] and a scholar-advisor to the Black Earth Institute.[3]

Among other books Trask wrote Black Hawk: The Battle for the Heart of America.[4] He has also had his work published in magazines and scholarly publications including The Wisconsin Magazine of History,[5] The American Historical Review,[6] and The William and Mary Quarterly,[7] among others. He is the reviews editor for Voyageur: Northeastern Wisconsin’s Historical Review.[8] In addition, Trask has done work with Wisconsin Public Television. In 2009 he was a consultant and on-film commentator for Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Manitowoc and Two Rivers.[9] Two years prior he was featured as an on-film commentator for The Black Hawk War, an episode of Wisconsin Public Television’s weekly program, In Wisconsin.[10]

His work has been awarded in several different forums. In 2006, he received the Benjamin F. Shambaugh Award from the State Historical Society of Iowa for Black Hawk: The Battle for the Heart of America.[11] The same year he was named a Library Resident Fellow with the American Philosophical Society.[12]

State assembly campaign[edit]

Trask ran as the Democrat in the 25th District race for Wisconsin State Assembly in the November 2010 general election.[13] He was defeated in that race by Independent candidate Bob Ziegelbauer. Ziegelbauer won with 50% of the vote (9697 votes), while Trask managed 33% of the vote (6458). The Republican candidate, Andrew Wisniewski, collected 17% of the votes.[13]

Selected publications[edit]



  1. ^ a b c About U-W Manitowoc, Faculty and Staff, S-V", University of Wisconsin-Manitowoc, accessed January 21, 2011.
  2. ^ "Wisconsin Academy announces 2008 Fellows", (Press release), Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters, May 27, 2008, accessed January 20, 2011.
  3. ^ Fellowship Program: Scholar-Advisor", Black Earth Institute, accessed January 20, 2011.
  4. ^ Trask, Kerry A. Black Hawk: The Battle for the Heart of America, New York, Henry Holt: 2007, (ISBN 9780805082623).
  5. ^ Trask, Kerry A. "Making a Fire Within: The Writing of a Civil War Narrative from Wisconsin", Wisconsin Magazine of History Volume 82, number 4, Summer 1999, accessed January 20, 2011.
  6. ^ Trask, Kerry A. James Marten. The Children's Civil War, (book review), The American Historical Review, Volume 104, Number 5, December 1999, accessed January 21, 2011.
  7. ^ Schweitzer, Mary McKinney, et al. Reviewed work(s): Paxton: A Study of Community Structure and Mobility in the Colonial Pennsylvania Backcountry by George W. Franz, (JSTOR), Third Series, Vol. 48, No. 1, January 1991, pp. 132-134, Trask review on p. 132.
  8. ^ "About the Voyageur Staff", Voyageur: Northeast Wisconsin's Historical Review, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, accessed January 20, 2011.
  9. ^ "Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Manitowoc-Two Rivers" (transcript), Wisconsin Public Television - Wisconsin Stories, accessed January 19, 2011.
  10. ^ "In Wisconsin Transcript #000533" (transcript), Wisconsin Public Television - In Wisconsin, May 15, 2007, accessed January 19, 2011.
  11. ^ "Recipients of the Benjamin F. Shambaugh Award", Iowa Center for the Book - State Library of Iowa, accessed January 19, 2011.
  12. ^ "Library Resident Fellows - 2009-2005", American Philosophical Society, accessed January 19, 2011.
  13. ^ a b "You Decide 2010: Election Results from Around Wisconsin", WNFL, November 3, 2010, accessed January 19, 2011.
  14. ^ Valeri, Mark (1990). "Rev. of Kerry Trask, In the Pursuit of Shadows". The William and Mary Quarterly. Third. 47 (4). JSTOR 2937987. 
  15. ^ Roca, Steven Louis (1996). "Rev. of Kerry Trask, Fire within". Wisconsin Magazine of History. 80 (1): 67–68. 
  16. ^ Gramm, Kent (1996). "Rev. of Kerry Trask, Fire Within". The Journal of American History. 83 (2): 625. doi:10.2307/2945001. 
  17. ^ Gallman, J. Matthew Louis (1997). "Rev. of Kerry Trask, Fire within". The American Historical Review. 102 (1): 192–93. doi:10.2307/2171412. 
  18. ^ Owens, Patricia Ann (1996). "Rev. of Kerry Trask, Fire within". Illinois Historical Journal. 89 (3): 189–90. 
  19. ^ Field, Phyllis F. (1996). "Rev. of Kerry Trask, Fire within". Michigan Historical Review. 22 (1): 158–59. 
  20. ^ Rodgers, Thomas E. (1996). "Rev. of Skidmore, 'The Alford Brothers, and Kerry Trask, Fire within". Indiana Magazine of History. 92 (3): 278–80. 
  21. ^ McClinton, Rowena (2007). "Rev. of Kerry Trask, Black Hawk". Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society. 100 (3): 283–85. JSTOR 40204693. 

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