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Wisconsin: Local History & Genealogy Resource Guide

Compiled by reference specialists at the Library of Congress, this guide identifies key print and online resources for pursuing family history, as well as state, county and municipal historical research, for the state of Wisconsin.


Long home to numerous Native American tribes, including the Chippewa, Menominee, Oneida, Potawatomi and Ho Chunk (Winnebago), European explorers arrived in the area now known as Wisconsin in the late 1600s. After governance as a territory under French, British, and ultimately United States rule, Wisconsin finally joined the Union as the 30th state in 1848.

This guide offers a selection of resources and strategies for Wisconsin local history and genealogy research. These include the print and digital collections of the Library of Congress, as well as external repositories and web sites key to finding forebears in the Badger State.

Joseph Hutchins Colton, cartographer. Township map of the State of Wisconsin. 1851. Library of Congress Geography and Map Division.

About Local History & Genealogy Reference Services

The Library of Congress has one of the world's premier collections of U.S. and foreign genealogical and local historical publications, numbering more than 50,000 compiled family histories and over 100,000 U.S. local histories. The Library's genealogy collection began as early as 1815 with the purchase of Thomas Jefferson's library.