cover of book

Tavern League: Portraits of Wisconsin Bars
by Carl Corey
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2011
Cloth: 978-0-87020-478-4 | eISBN: 978-0-87020-566-8
Library of Congress Classification TX950.57.W6C67 2011
Dewey Decimal Classification 647.95775


In Tavern League, photographer Carl Corey documents a unique and important segment of the Wisconsin community. Our bars are unique micro-communities, offering patrons a sense of belonging. Many of these bars are the only public gathering place in the rural communities they serve. These simple taverns offer the individual the valuable opportunity for face to face conversation and camaraderie, particularly as people become more physically isolated through the accelerated use of the internet’s social networking, mobile texting, gaming, and the rapid-fire of email.

This collection of 60 pictures captures the Wisconsin tavern as it is today. Carl Corey’s view is both familiar and undeniably unique, his pictures resonant with anyone who has set foot in a Wisconsin tavern. As the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Mary Louise Schumacher has written, “Carl Corey’s photographs . . . document iconic American places that are taken for granted. . . . They are comforting images, places we know, but also eerie and remote, presented with a sense of romance and nostalgia that suggests they are already past.”

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