Oh, you're growing your beard out for the fall? How cute.

In Wisconsin's long, rich history, growing a beard wasn't a seasonal fling but a right of passage, a sign of manhood, and often a multi-year commitment to cultivating and sculpting a magnificent beard or moustache.

Perusing the Wisconsin Historical Society's collection of portraits reveals an astonishingly diverse array of facial hair shapes and sizes, from refined and elegant to untamed and even bizarre.

Here's a selection of some of the fantastic beards and moustaches in the WHS's archives.

Nick Heynen is the online editor for the Wisconsin State Journal and manages the newspaper's social media accounts. A Maryland native transplanted to Wisconsin, he joined the paper in 2007 as data reporter.