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Whitbeck, R. H., 1871-1939 (Ray Hughes) / The geography and economic development of southeastern Wisconsin
(1921)

Chapter VIII. The city and county of Kenosha,   pp. 179-211 PDF (8.2 MB)


Page 179


KENOSHA COUNTY
CHAPTER VIII
THE CITY AND COUNTY OF KENOSHA
KENOSHA COUNTY
The present Kenosha County was a part of Milwaukee
County until 1836, and was included in Racine County from
1836 to 1850 when it was made a separate county with the
county seat at Kenosha. Its area is 274 square miles, making
it one of the four small counties in the state; only Milwaukee,
Ozaukee, and Pepin counties are smaller. It has one city-
Kenosha-and no large villages; it is essentially a farming
county.
GROWTH OF POPUIATION
The first settlers, largely New Yorkers and New Englanders,
came in 1835; and in 1850, over 10,000 persons were living in
the county,-two-thirds of these on farms. Some of the town-
ships had more people seventy years ago than they have now;
for example, the town of Brighton had 875 people in 1850, and
833 in 1910. Outside of the city of Kenosha, the population of
the county has increased but little in a half century, yet the
output of farm products has increased many fold; this is
mainly due to the increased use of machinery which enables
one or two men to accomplish in certain kinds of work more
than a dozen accomplished 50 years ago.
THE Fox RIVER AND THE VnLAGE OF WMLMOT
The principal stream in the county is the Fox River, which
flows southward across the western end of the county into the
Illinois River and thence to the Mississippi  The village of
Wilmot, settled in 1844, and now having less than 300 people,
is the principal village on the Fox River in Kenosha County.
The village, like many others, owed its location to an early
water power; a small flour and grist mill was erected there in
1846 and was used until 1878 when it burned. In 1875 Wilmot
had a flour mill, two saw mills, and a woolen mill. In 1879
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