Adams County, Wisconsin
Map of Wisconsin highlighting Adams County
Location in the state of Wisconsin
Map of USA WI
Wisconsin's location in the U.S.
Founded 1848
Named for Late president John Adams or John Quincy Adams
Seat Friendship
Largest city Adams
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

689 sq mi (1,783 km²)
648 sq mi (1,678 km²)
41 sq mi (106 km²), 5.92%
 - (2000)
 - Density

29/sq mi (11/km²)
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Adams County is a county located in the U.S. state of Wisconsin. Its name may be in honor of the second President of the United States, John Adams, or his son, the sixth President, John Quincy Adams (sources differ). As of 2000, the population was 18,643. Its county seat is Friendship6.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,783 km² (689 sq mi). 1,678 km² (648 sq mi) of it is land and 106 km² (41 sq mi) of it (5.92%) is water.

Adjacent counties Edit


USA Adams County, Wisconsin age pyramid

2000 Census Age Pyramid for Adams County.

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1900 9,141
1910 8,604 −5.9%
1920 9,287 7.9%
1930 8,003 −13.8%
1940 8,449 5.6%
1950 7,906 −6.4%
1960 7,566 −4.3%
1970 9,234 22.0%
1980 13,457 45.7%
1990 15,682 16.5%
2000 18,643 18.9%
WI Counties 1900-1990

As of the census2 of 2000, there were 18,643 people, 7,900 households, and 5,466 families residing in the county. The population density was 11/km² (29/sq mi). There were 14,123 housing units at an average density of 8/km² (22/sq mi). The racial makeup of the county was 97.63% White, 0.27% Black or African American, 0.59% Native American, 0.33% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.33% from other races, and 0.83% from two or more races. 1.44% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 96.1% spoke English, 1.8% Spanish and 1.1% German as their first language.

There were 7,900 households out of which 23.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.50% were married couples living together, 6.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.80% were non-families. 25.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.76.

In the county, the population was spread out with 20.80% under the age of 18, 5.60% from 18 to 24, 24.30% from 25 to 44, 28.40% from 45 to 64, and 20.90% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 44 years. For every 100 females there were 102.90 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 101.30 males.

According to the 2005 Census, German was the most commonly reported ethnic group in Adams County. The leading ethnic groups were:

  • German 35.1%
  • Irish 10.7%
  • Polish 9.1%
  • Norwegian 8.1%
  • English 7.1%

Within WisconsinEdit

There are 72 counties in Wisconsin:

  • Adams County is the 51st most populous county in Wisconsin - 20,828 according to the 2005 Census population estimates
  • Adams County is the 49th most densely populated county - 32.6 people per square mile according to 2004 population estimates
  • Adams County has the 6th highest poverty rate - 11% according to 2003 Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE)
  • Adams County has the lowest median per capita household income - $17,753 according to the 2003 SAIPE
  • Adams County had the second lowest percentage of high school graduates - 76.7% according to the 2000 Census
  • Adams county had the lowest percentage of college graduates - 6.5% according to the 2000 Census
  • Adams County had the 28th highest percentage of African-American residents - .3% according to the 2000 Census
  • Adams Counts had the 24th highest percentage of Hispanic residents - 1.4% according to the 2000 Census
  • Adams is the 20th most Czech, 6th most Danish, 27th most Dutch, 35th most German, 6th most Hungarian, 15th most Irish, 18th most Italian, 30th most Norwegian, 18th most Polish, 6th most Portuguese, 6th most Scottish, 30th most Swedish, and 9th most Ukrainian.


The area covered by present-day Adams County has been part of several other counties throughout Wisconsin's history. In 1840, when Wisconsin was still a territory, Adams County was the south-western section of Brown County (A) (today, Brown County includes the area around the southern part of Green Bay). In 1836, Portage County (A) was created and included most of present day Columbia County, including the city of Portage. In 1846, Portage County(A) was renamed Columbia County. The area from the northern boundary of Columbia County to Lake Superior was removed from Brown County(A) and was then called Portage County(B). In 1848, the southern part of Portage County(B) was renamed Adams County(A) and included all of current-day Adams County and the northern section of Juneau County. In 1858, The northwestern part of Adams County(A) was joined with the northern part of Sauk County to form present-day Juneau County. At this time, Adams County took its current shape.

Friendship was founded by settlers coming from Friendship. Today, Adams is the largest community in Adams County, but this was not always so. In the 1880s, there were plans for a railroad that connected Chicago and St. Paul to pass through Friendship. It appears that once this was decided, local landowners increased their demands. Instead of paying more for the land in Friendship, the railroad placed the tracks two miles south of Friendship. To service workers, boxcars were stacked to form housing, and the town of Adams was created. This stretch of track would become the famous "400" route. Today, Adams has about 3 times as many people as Friendship.

Cities, villages and towns Edit


Welcome sign along the Wisconsin River.




Unincorporated communitiesEdit

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 43°58′N 89°46′W / 43.97, -89.77

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Adams County, Wisconsin. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.

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