The area of Wisconsin was part of the original territory of the United States, being part of lands ceded by four states to the United States and designated in 1787 as the “Territory northwest of the River Ohio.” Wisconsin Territory was organized on July 3, 1836, from part of Michigan Territory; it included all of present-day Wisconsin, Iowa, and Minnesota, eastern North Dakota and South Dakota, and a small part of northeastern Nebraska. The territory was reduced in 1838 with the organization of Iowa Territory west of the Mississippi River and a line northward from the river’s source.
Although the territory had not yet been legally established, census data for Wisconsin are available beginning with the 1820 census. The 1840 census population is for the entire territory, including the portion of Minnesota northeast and east of the Mississippi River and a line northward from the river’s source. For an explanation of the revision to the 1820 and 1830 population of Wisconsin, see Richard L. Forstall, Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790- 1990, Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1996, page 184.
Data for the legally established state of Wisconsin are available beginning with the 1850 census.
See: Geographic Terms & Concepts
Counties & County Equivalents
Interactive Map of Wisconsin Counties | Static Overview Map of Wisconsin Counties
There are 72 counties in Wisconsin. All counties in Wisconsin are functioning governmental entities, each governed by a board of supervisors. Menominee County and Menominee town are governmentally consolidated.
Wisconsin has 1,921 county subdivisions known as minor civil divisions (MCDs). There are 1,257 towns with functioning, but not necessarily active, governments. Menominee town is coextensive with Menominee County and has a joint county/MCD government. Towns in Wisconsin are each governed by a board of supervisors. The 594 incorporated places in Wisconsin are independent of MCDs and serve as 651 county subdivisions. In addition, there are 13 undefined MCDs consisting entirely of water area.
Places (Incorporated Cities, Towns & Census Designated Places (CDPs))
There are 773 places in Wisconsin; 594 incorporated places and 179 census designated places (CDPs). The incorporated places consist of 190 cities and 404 villages. The minimum population required for incorporation in Wisconsin is 150. Incorporated places are independent of county subdivisions.
Alphabetical List of Cities, Towns, CDPs and Other Populated Places
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q, R | S | T | U, V | W, X, Y, Z
Wisconsin Civil Features
Wisconsin Civil Features: Political Subdivisions, Native Areas, Land Grants, etc. - sorted by Census Class Codes.
Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas
There are 12 Metropolitan and 12 Micropolitan Statistical Areas in Wisconsin. WI Metopolitan & Micropolitan Areas
Wisconsin ZIP Code Tabulation Areas
There are 774 ZIP Code tabulation areas (ZCTAs) in Wisconsin. View Wisconsin ZIP Codes and ZIP Code Maps.
Wisconsin has 46 elementary school districts, 10 secondary school districts and 371 unified school districts. View Wisconsin Public and Private Schools.
Wisconsin has 8 congressional districts. An interactive map shows the contact information for each Representative as well as the boundaries for each Wisconsin district. View Map of Wisconsin Congressional Districts.
State Legislative Districts
There are 33 state senate districts and 99 assembly districts in Wisconsin.
American Indian Areas
Wisconsin has 12 federally recognized American Indian areas. There are 11 reservations, 8 with associated off-reservation trust land. There is also one off-reservation trust land associated with a reservation in a neighboring state.