1956 – Father of Modern Wisconsin Republican Party dies

On this day William J. Campbell, a major contributor the , died at his home in Oshkosh. A lumber broker and former University of Wisconsin regent, Campbell never held public office, but was generally given credit for the founding of the Republican Voluntary Committee, the working party organization in the state. State Attorney General Vernon W. Thomson hailed Campbell as a "true political pioneer" for steering the selection of GOP candidates away from the "domination of Robert M. LaFollette, Sr." An ardent opponent of the "nomination paper" method of endorising candidates for office, Campbell founded the Republican Voluntary Committee in 1925, in large part as a means of circumventing state limitations on spending by the statutory Republican Party. [Source: 2/29/1956, Section 2 p. 12]