Richland County, Wisconsin Genealogy

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United States
Richland County

Guide to Richland County, Wisconsin ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

County Facts
County seat: Richland Center
Organized: February 18, 1842
Parent County(s): Crawford, Sauk[1]
Neighboring Counties
Crawford  • Grant  • Iowa  • Sauk  • Vernon
See County Maps
Richland County Courthouse WI.jpg
Location Map
WI Richland.png

County Information


The County was named for the high quality of its soil. The County has Richland Center as its seat and the County was created 1850. The County is located in the southwest area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse

Richland County Courthouse
181 W Seminary Street
Richland Center, WI 53581
Phone: 608-647-2197
Richland County Website

Register of Deeds has birth and death from 1870, marriage and land records from 1850.
Clerk Court has divorce and court records from 1860.
Register in Probate has probate records from 1851.
City Clerk has burial records. [3]

Richland County, Wisconsin Record Dates

Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1870 1850 1870 1860 1850 1851 1820
Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1907. General compliance year unknown.

Record Loss

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

Boundary Changes

  • 1842--Richland County was created 18 February 1842 from Crawford and Sauk Counties.
  • County seat: Richland Center[5]

For animated maps illustrating Wisconsin County boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Wisconsin County Boundary Maps" (1790-1961) may be viewed for free at the website.

Populated Places

The following are locations in Richland County, Wisconsin:

History Timeline


Bible Records


Business, Commerce, and Occupations


Cemeteries of Richland County, Wisconsin online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Wisconsin Cemeteries for more information

Census Records

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1850 903
1860 9,732 977.7%
1870 15,731 61.6%
1880 18,174 15.5%
1890 19,121 5.2%
1900 19,483 1.9%
1910 18,809 −3.5%
1920 19,823 5.4%
1930 19,525 −1.5%
1940 20,381 4.4%
1950 19,245 −5.6%
1960 17,684 −8.1%
1970 17,079 −3.4%
1980 17,476 2.3%
1990 17,521 0.3%
2000 17,924 2.3%
2010 18,021 0.5%
Source: "".

For tips on accessing Richland census records online, see: Wisconsin Census.

State Census

  • 1855 - 1855 Wisconsin State Census This census includes name of head of family; other individuals in the household are identified by sex and race, number of deaf and dumb, blind, insane and foreign born.
  • 1865 - 1865 Wisconsin State Census Name index and images of the 1865 State Census which names the head of household. Most records have been destroyed but schedules exist for the following counties: Dunn, Green, Jackson, Kewaunee, Ozaukee, and Sheboygan.
  • 1875 - 1875 Wisconsin State Census Identifies head of household by name.
  • 1885 - Wisconsin State Census, 1885 at FamilySearch — index and images. Search indexed census.Identifies by name of head of household. Other information is statistical and identifies the rest of the household by race, gender and country of birth.
  • 1895 - Wisconsin State Census, 1895 at FamilySearch — index and images. Identifies head of household by name. Other information is statistical.
  • 1905 - Wisconsin State Census, 1905 at FamilySearch — Name index and images of population. Enumerates by name all inhabitants.

Federal Census

Church Records

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about Wisconsin denominations, view the Wisconsin Church Records wiki page.

Court Records


Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups

Funeral Homes



Land and Property Records

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See Wisconsin Land and Property for additional information about early Wisconsin land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse and where records are currently housed.

Local Histories

Maps and Gazetteers



Military Records

Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Richland served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Richland:

- 1st Regiment, Wisconsin Cavalry, Company M
- 2nd Regiment, Wisconsin Cavalry, Company F
- 3rd Regiment, Wisconsin Cavalry, Companies D and possibly F
- 5th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry, Company H
- 11th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry, Companies D and H
- 12th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry, Company I
- 14th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry, Company H with men from the town of Forest, which is found in Fond du Lac County, Richland County, St. Croix County or Vernon County

Naturalization and Citizenship



Other Records


Probate Records

Probate records are held by the Richland Clerk of Circuit Court and are housed at the Richland Courthouse. See the wiki page Wisconsin Probate Records for information about how to use probate records.

Content: Probate records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their place of residence.

Record types: Wills, estates, guardianships, and adoptions.

Online Records

School Records

Tax Records

Wisconsin tax records complement land records and can be used to supplement the years between censuses. Because only persons who owned property or other items that could be taxed were listed, some residents were not included in tax lists. There may also be gaps of several years in the tax records. For more information see the Wiki page, Wisconsin Taxation.

Vital Records

Vital records consist of birth, death, marriage and divorce records. Most counties started keeping records in the 1870s. In 1907, the counties began sending copies to the state.

For pre-1907 births, deaths, and marriages, search the Wisconsin Genealogy Index.

For additional information, see Wisconsin Vital Records.





Research Facilities


  • Area Research Center - University of Wisconsin-Platteville
    Southwest Wisconsin Room-Karrmann Library
    One University Plaza
    Platteville, WI 53818-3099
    Phone: 608-342-1719

Family History Centers

Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes.


  • Southwest Wisconsin Room-Karrmann Library
    Area Research Center - University of Wisconsin-Platteville
    One University Plaza
    Platteville, WI 53818-3099
    Phone: 608-342-1719



  • Richland County Historical Society
    29449 Pronold Ln
    Richland Center, WI 53581
    Phone: 608-647-4860
  • Ancestors of Richland Hills
    325 N Central Ave
    Richland Center, WI 53581
    Phone: 608-647-6444
  • Lower Wisconsin River Genealogical & Historical Research Center
    PO Box 202
    Wauzeka, WI 53826-0202
  • Richland County Historical Society
    606 Sunny Ln
    Richland Center, WI 53581
    Phone: 608-647-3461


Research Guides


  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Wisconsin.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Richland County, Wisconsin " in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, ",_Wisconsin."
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Wisconsin.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Richland County, Wisconsin. Page 755-760, At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 757-759.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Wisconsin.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.