Wisconsin Genealogy Trails
Dodge County, Wisconsin

Dodge County History


Dodge county was organized in 1836. It was named for Col. Henry Dodge, an early prospector in southwestern Wisconsin during the lead-mine fever who had previously made a name for himself in his native state Missouri as an Indian fighter. He took an active part in the Black Hawk war and was one of the founders of Wisconsin territory and was its first territorial governor. Dodge county is known as one of the best agricultural as well as stock raising portions of the state. Iron is found in the northeast part of the county.

Their three features account for the flouring mills, cheese factories, iron works and the manufacturing of farming implements being established as far back as 1875.

Juneau is the county seat and was named for Solomon Laurent Juneau.

There are five lakes in the county, Fox and Beaver Dam lakes, Horicon lake, and two smaller ones, Loss and Mud Lake.

Beaver Dam, the principal city, favored with inexhaustible water power, is situated on Beaver dam, an artificial body of water about twelve miles long and one and on-half miles at its greatest width. Fox and Loss lakes flow into it.

In early days there was a co-education school called the Wayland University Institute and in the village of Fox Lake, nearby, was a seminary of high order for young ladies.  Many young ladies in pioneer days were sent there from La Crosse.

Dodge county has always been a hot bed for politicians.  
There was great excitement and bitterness when the fight over the little "Red School House" took place in 1890.
It is said that if the Bennett law had passed and the required American text books used in all schools and the American language (formerly called the English language) not taught as a side issue, the strife for loyalty to the government would not have taken place in this state.
Few people living in this part of the state realize how many native born Wisconsin people could not read the language of their country before the World War and many cannot read it today. The congressional contest was so intense that a Mr. Gunther, a republican from Oshkosh, was picked from out of the district to run against Mr. A. K. Delany, the democratic candidate not in sympathy with the "Little Red School House." He was defeated and under the first administration of Grover Cleveland, the governorship of Alaska was given to satisfy him.  
Another prominent man was Silas Lammeroux of Mayville, who was county judge of Dodge county, and afterwards was appointed United States land commissioner. After serving his term in Washington upon his return to Wisconsin, he made his home in Beaver Dam. [Source: La Crosse Tribune (28 Mar. 1926) History of Wisconsin; by Mrs. C. S. Van Auken – submitted by Diana Heser Morse]


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