Girl Scout troop purchases monument for female activist, Meta Schlichting Berger.

Girl Scout troop purchases monument for female activist, Meta Schlichting Berger.

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88Nine Radio Milwaukee

When it comes to influential women in Milwaukee’s history, its hard to not mention Meta Schlichting Berger. Born in 1865, Berger was the first female to hold a position on the Milwaukee School Board, helped put hot lunches and nurses in Milwaukee schools and stood up for the rights of teachers.

But while visiting Forest Home Cemetery on a Girl Scout tour two years ago, troop 8617 from Cudahy noticed something peculiar; after her passing in 1944, no one had ever given her a headstone near her resting place.

Thanks to two years of saving money and holding fundraisers, Troop 8617 stands next to the new headstone they purchased for Meta Schlichting Berger.

“The girls were upset that no one had given Meta a headstone so they asked, ‘Well, can we give her one?’ So that’s where it all began,” explains troop leader, Becky Osse, who today, two years after that initial tour and countless fundraisers later, is back at Forest Home Cemetery with troop 8617 and is unveiling the brand new headstone for this woman in history.

“[It’s] important to recognize the women in history that paved the way for us, and now [these Girl Scouts] are making their own history.”

Girl Scout troops release balloons in Forest Home Cemetery after the unveiling in honor and memory of Berger.

Listen to the full story on Troop 8617 below: 

Who was Meta Schlichting Berger? You can learn more about this influential woman in Milwaukee’s history here.

To take a tour of Forest Home Cemetery, you can visit them online at www.foresthomepreservation.org/tours.

For more on Girl Scouts of America click here