Young Meta Berger of Milwaukee
Born on February 23, 1873 in Milwaukee, Meta Schlichting was educated at the Wisconsin State Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee). Meta taught primary school after graduating. She was forced to resign when she married Victor Berger in 1897 due to rules that required female teachers to be single.

Meta Berger, Educator and Politician   1873-1944
Milwaukee's Meta Berger with fancy hat
Meta was elected to the Milwaukee School Board in 1909, and as a school board member, she supported progressive measures such as the construction of playgrounds, "penny lunches," and medical exams for children. Ms. Berger also advocated on behalf of teachers for tenure, a pension system, and a fixed salary schedule. She was re-elected again and again, serving a total of 30 years on the board. Meta's work for the school board led to her appointments to the Wisconsin State Board of Education, the Wisconsin Board of Regents of Normal Schools and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents.

Meta Berger and Wisconsin Governor Heil in 1941
After the death of her husband, Victor, in 1929, Meta was selected to fill his seat on the Socialist Party's National Executive Committee, a position given to few women. She resigned from the Socialist Party in 1940 and spent her remaining years on her farm in Thiensville where she died on June 16, 1944. Meta was a daughter of German immigrants who became a prominent and outspoken activist and politician at a time when women's roles and place were hotly contested.

"We never obtained Suffrage until we made a row about it." 
- Meta Berger


It was very interesting to read this article. Thanks for posting it.

09/19/2016 1:08pm

This story is very inspiring. Although it is short, you were able to capture the most important parts or the highlights of the story. From what I have read, I can say the Meta Berger left an impact in this world. She was able to exercise her rights and express what is on her mind. I hope that people who will read this article will be inspired by her doings and be encouraged to follow her path.

11/02/2016 12:30pm

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11/11/2016 5:48am

She was a great person. It was pretty interesting to read about her. Such history posts are amazing.

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12/25/2016 8:07am

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02/25/2017 8:52am

I am a feminist. She is far more awesome as described in the article. She is one of the pillars in the education history of Milwaukee school. I admire a woman with a strong leadership. Also, I really love ideas and topics about women empowerment.

03/28/2017 7:31am

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04/11/2017 6:07pm

May I translate this into my native language?

04/20/2017 5:55am

Enjoyed reading through this, very good stuff, thank you.

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