Washington County, Wisconsin Genealogy

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United States
Wisconsin
Washington County


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

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County Facts
County seat: West Bend
Organized: December 7, 1836
Parent County(s): Brown and Milwaukee Counties[1]
Neighboring Counties
Dodge  • Fond du Lac  • Milwaukee  • Ozaukee  • Sheboygan  • Waukesha
See County Maps
Courthouse
Washington County Courthouse Wisconsin.jpg
Location Map
WI Washington.png
Adoption

County Information

Description

The County was named for President George Washington. The County has West Bend as its seat and the County was created 1845. The County is located in the southeast area of the state. [2]

County Courthouse

Washington County Courthouse
432 E Washington Street
West Bend, WI 53095
Phone: 262-335-4301
Washington County Website

County Clerk has birth, marriage, and death records from 1850, divorce and court records from 1849.
Register in Probate has probate records from 1851. [3]

Washington 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
1850 1850 1850 1849 1835 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

  • 1836--Washington County was created 7 December 1836 from Brown andMilwaukee Counties.
  • County seat: West Bend, WI[5]

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

Populated Places

The following are locations in Washington County, Wisconsin:

History Timeline

Resources

Bible Records

Biographies

Business, Commerce, and Occupations

Cemeteries

Cemeteries of Washington 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.  %±
1840 343
1850 19,485 5580.8%
1860 23,622 21.2%
1870 23,919 1.3%
1880 23,442 −2.0%
1890 22,751 −2.9%
1900 23,589 3.7%
1910 23,784 0.8%
1920 25,713 8.1%
1930 26,551 3.3%
1940 28,430 7.1%
1950 33,902 19.2%
1960 46,119 36.0%
1970 63,839 38.4%
1980 84,848 32.9%
1990 95,328 12.4%
2000 117,493 23.3%
2010 131,887 12.3%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

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

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

Directories

Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups

Germans
Archives, Libraries, and Museums; Biographies; Church Records; Cemetery Records; Court Records; Histories; Immigration/emigration/migration; Maps; Newspapers; Societies

Funeral Homes

Genealogies

Guardianship

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

WI WASHINGTON.JPG

Migration

Military Records

Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Washington 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 Washington:

- 8th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry, Company I
- 10th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry, Company D (These men were from the town of Menasha. There is a town of Menasha in both Dodge and Washington Counties.)
- 12th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry, Company D

Naturalization and Citizenship

Newspapers

Obituaries

Other Records

Periodicals

Probate Records

Probate records are held by the Washington Clerk of Circuit Court and are housed at the Washington 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.

Birth

Marriage

Death

Divorce

Research Facilities

Archives

  • Area Research Center - University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
    Milwaukee, Division of Archives and Special Collections
    Golda Meir Library, Room W250
    2311 East Hartford Avenue
    PO Box 604
    Milwaukee, WI 53201-0604
    Phone: 414-229-5402
    Email: askarch@uwm.edu
    Website

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.

Libraries

  • Golda Meir Library - University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
    Area Research Center, Milwaukee, Division of Archives and Special Collections
    Golda Meir Library, Room W250
    2311 East Hartford Avenue
    PO Box 604
    Milwaukee, WI 53201-0604
    Phone: 414-229-5402
    Email: askarch@uwm.edu
    Website

Museums

Societies

  • Washington County Historical Society
    320 S 5th Ave
    West Bend, WI 53095
    Phone: 262-335-4678
    Website
  • Germantown Historical Society
    Highway 145 & Holy Hill Rd
    Germantown, WI 53022
    Website
  • Hartford Genealogical Society
    109 N Main St
    Hartford, WI 53027
  • Jackson Historical Society
    2860 Division Rd
    Jackson, WI 53037
    Phone: 262-677-4825
    Website
  • Kewaskum Historical Society
    1202 Parkview Dr
    Kewaskum, WI 53040
    Phone: 262-626-4656
  • Richfield Historical Society
    PO Box 268
    Richfield, WI 53076
    Phone: 262-628-2841
    Website

Websites

Research Guides

References

  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, "Washington County, Wisconsin " in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washington_County,_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), Washington 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.