The Creation of Wisconsin Territory

With the decline of British influence after the War of 1812, the population of the Great Lakes region increased dramatically. New territories were created from old, and the most populous ones became states. Wisconsin was successively part of the original Northwest Territory (1788-1800), Indiana Territory (1800-1809), Illinois Territory (1809-1818), and Michigan Territory (1818-1836) before it became a territory in its own right (1836-1848).

By 1818 the boundaries of the Michigan Territory had been extended westward to the Mississippi River. Out of the area beyond lower Michigan were created three counties to administer local government: Crawford County in the west with... more...

Original Documents and Other Primary Sources

Link to article: The memoirs of Nelson Dewey, the state's first governor.The memoirs of Nelson Dewey, the state's first governor.
Link to article: Early History of the Brothertown IndiansEarly History of the Brothertown Indians
Link to article: Theodore Rodolf recounts his life in the lead region in the 1830sTheodore Rodolf recounts his life in the lead region in the 1830s
Link to article: The founding of Fort Winnebago and the career of trader Pierre PaquetteThe founding of Fort Winnebago and the career of trader Pierre Paquette
Link to article: Nine newspaper stories about the first capitol (1917).Nine newspaper stories about the first capitol (1917).
Link to article: Girlhood and motherhood on the Wisconsin frontier, 1824-1860.Girlhood and motherhood on the Wisconsin frontier, 1824-1860.
Link to article: The surveyor that laid out Madison recalls his days in the field in 1837.The surveyor that laid out Madison recalls his days in the field in 1837.
Link to images: Early Wisconsin settler and Madison Promoter James Duane DotyEarly Wisconsin settler and Madison Promoter James Duane Doty
Link to images: Wisconsin's first Territorial Governor, Henry DodgeWisconsin's first Territorial Governor, Henry Dodge
Link to manuscript: Henry Baird objects to the location of the territorial capitol, 1836.Henry Baird objects to the location of the territorial capitol, 1836.
Link to map: The imaginary capital city that its chief promoter envisioned, 1836.The imaginary capital city that its chief promoter envisioned, 1836.
Link to map: States and territories created under the Northwest Ordinance.States and territories created under the Northwest Ordinance.
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