Series: Wisconsin's Diverse Waves Of Immigration

Many distinct and ongoing waves of immigration have indelibly shaped communities across Wisconsin. The 19th-century influxes of immigrants from Germany, Scandinavia and elsewhere in Europe are strongly associated with the state's cultural identity, but the immigrant experience in Wisconsin is far more varied. Canada has been a small but steady source of immigrants throughout the state's history. Several increasingly large phases of immigration from Mexico and other nations around Latin America have left imprints around the state, ranging from Milwaukee to dairy and vegetable farms in rural areas. In recent decades, immigrants from Asia have likewise increasingly made their home in the state, with Hmong communities standing out. As new groups of immigrants arrive in Wisconsin, their civic, religions and economic contributions adds to the state's diversity.
 
Roberto Tecpile often puts in 70 hours a week at the Rosenholm dairy farm in Cochrane — a village in Buffalo County where winter days are short and can be bitterly cold.
Seasonal workers who traveled from Mexico, and Texas-born people of Mexican descent, known as Tejanos, became a crucial part of Wisconsin's agricultural workforce during and after World War II.
In 2015, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan sued three employment agencies in Chicago's Chinatown, and two Illinois restaurants that had used their services, for allegedly exploiting Latino immigrant workers in several states, including Wisconsin.
Imagine not being able to speak English, or not very much of it, and facing deportation proceedings in federal immigration court.
Wisconsin is not among the 17 states known to host facilities where the federal government detains migrant children. The state does, however, have two facilities where U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement holds adult detainees.
Wisconsin no es uno de los 17 estados donde el gobierno federal tiene centros de detención para niños inmigrantes. Sin embargo, el estado tiene dos centros de detención para adultos.
Mexican immigrants and their descendants born in the United States comprise a growing and increasingly visible group of communities around Wisconsin.
While place of birth is straightforward for most people, for a few the waters are uncertain.
Immigration is an engine of change that has shaped Wisconsin throughout its history, reflecting the broader story of newcomers building new communities around the United States.
Immigration as a top line issue for dairy farmers would have been unthinkable just a generation ago when Wisconsin's agricultural landscape was dominated by small and medium-sized dairy farms run by the families that owned them.