In the spring of 1838, three men staked out claims at the present site of Sauk City. By 1840, settlements had been established at what are now Prairie du Sac and Baraboo. Sauk County was formed in 1840 and was surveyed between 1840 and 1845.
In the years 1840 through 1860, Sauk County was in a pioneering phase. The population increased from a few hundred residents to almost 19,000 during that 20-year time frame. Principal activities included wheat farming and the raising of hops. The 1860’s and 1870’s saw another economic boom stimulated by the expansion of railroads through the County. Villages and cities were chartered and the number of farms in the county peaked at 3,886. By the turn of the century, the county population had exceeded 33,000 and the production of dairy products and row crops became more predominant in agriculture.
Population growth slowed during the early part of the twentieth century. Industrial development and tourism stimulated growth again in the decade immediately following World War II and most recently during the last 25 years.
Sauk County is filled with many historical places. Please see the Photo Gallery for some interesting facts and images.