Every state in America has its own claim to fame; Illinois is well known as the birthplace of the zipper...California gave us iPhones...and Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing was created in Alaska. You get my point, every state in the nation is known for something extraordinary, but what about Wisconsin?

What Is Wisconsin Famous for Creating?

When most people think of Wisconsin, they think of the land of cheese and beer, but apparently, some controversy surrounds one of Wisconsin's biggest achievements, being the birthplace of the hamburger.


According to homeofthehamburger.org, a Wisconsin man named Charlie Nagreen stumbled upon the creation of the hamburger while attending the Seymor, Wisconsin fair at the age of 15 in 1885.

Charlie Nagree was at the fair to sell meatballs to visitors and he quickly discovered that while making meatballs easy, eating them while on the move is not. Charlie observed that fairgoers preferred meals that they could eat while walking and viewing each exhibit, so he got creative. Home of the Hamburger says;

 After not experiencing much success selling the meatballs, he had an idea and located some bread. He realized people could take this meal with them if he simply smashed the meat together between two pieces of bread. He called it a "hamburger".

How Did the Name "Hamburger" Come About?

Home of the Hamburger reports that the Seymour, Wisconsin area used to be home to many German immigrants in the late 1800s and ground-up beef steak was a popular meal choice in their culture. To gain attention for his new meat and bread combo, Charlie Nagreen took inspiration from the German city Hamburg and named his new food combination, the "hamburger". Obviously, that name worked.

hamburgers and hotdogs cooking on flaming grill
Getty Images

Other StateS who Claim They Created the Hamburger

If you ever take time to search the history of hamburgers you will quickly discover that many other states like New York, Texas, Connecticut, and Oklahoma all claim to be the birthplace of the "hamburger", BUT none of those states have historical proof like Charlie Nagree and Wisconsin do. When Charlie Nagree's new Hamburger took the fair world by storm, he did a lot of interviews and took a lot of pictures for local newspapers, so the proof is out there...if you look hard enough.

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