From a distance Milwaukee, Wisconsin is a collage of church steeples and brick. Its roots are Polish, German and French Canadian. Milwaukee’s terrain is sculpted by the glacier path and includes steep bluffs along Lake Michigan.
Once known almost exclusively for its brewing, Milwaukee was once the home to four of the world’s largest breweries (Schlitz, Blatz, Pabst and Miller), and was the number one beer producing city in the world for many years. During the Prohibition era Chicago gangster activity went north to Milwaukee.
Al Capone, noted Chicago mobster, owned a home in the Milwaukee suburb Brookfield, where moonshine was made. The house still stands on a street named after Capone. As breweries and manufacturing declined, Milwaukee took steps to reshape its image and develop new industries.
Stimulus package funds are included in the $787 billion stimulus package signed by President Barack Obama for lithium-ion battery development. Boston-Power’s interest in locating a plant in Milwaukee stems in part from the area’s manufacturing heritage and that it’s home to Johnson Controls Inc., the manufacturer has been developing lithium-ion batteries for hybrid-electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles and electric vehicles. Other employers in the Milwaukee area include Harley Davidson, SC Johnson, Milwaukee Tool.