Vernon County
Vernon County Courthouse in October 2015
Vernon County Courthouse in October 2015
Map of Wisconsin highlighting Vernon County
Location within the U.S. state of Wisconsin
Map of the United States highlighting Wisconsin
Wisconsin's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 43°35′N 90°50′W / 43.59°N 90.83°W / 43.59; -90.83
Country United States
State Wisconsin
Founded1851
Named forMount Vernon
SeatViroqua
Largest cityViroqua
Area
 • Total816 sq mi (2,110 km2)
 • Land792 sq mi (2,050 km2)
 • Water25 sq mi (60 km2)  3.0%%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total30,714
 • Estimate 
(2021)[1]
30,915
 • Density38/sq mi (15/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district3rd
Websitewww.vernoncounty.org

Vernon County is a county in the U.S. state of Wisconsin. As of the 2020 census, the population was 30,714.[2] Its county seat is Viroqua.[3]

History

Vernon County was renamed from Bad Ax County on March 22, 1862. Bad Ax County had been created on March 1, 1851, from territory that had been part of Richland and Crawford counties.[4][5] The name Vernon was chosen to reflect the county's green fields of wheat and to evoke Mount Vernon.[6]

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 816 square miles (2,110 km2), of which 792 square miles (2,050 km2) is land and 25 square miles (65 km2) (3.0%) is water.[7]

Major highways

Railroads

Buses

Airports

Adjacent counties

Demographics and religion statistics

Historical population
Census Pop.
186011,007
187018,64569.4%
188023,23524.6%
189025,1118.1%
190028,35112.9%
191028,116−0.8%
192029,2524.0%
193028,537−2.4%
194029,9404.9%
195027,906−6.8%
196025,663−8.0%
197024,557−4.3%
198025,6424.4%
199025,617−0.1%
200028,0569.5%
201029,7736.1%
202030,7143.2%
2021 (est.)30,915[1]0.7%
U.S. Decennial Census[8]
1790–1960[9] 1900–1990[10]
1990–2000[11] 2010–2020[12]

2020 census

As of the census of 2020,[13] the population was 30,714. The population density was 38.8 inhabitants per square mile (15.0/km2). There were 13,813 housing units at an average density of 17.5 per square mile (6.8/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 95.4% White, 0.4% Black or African American, 0.3% Asian, 0.2% Native American, 0.8% from other races, and 2.9% from two or more races. Ethnically, the population was 1.5% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

2000 census

2000 Census Age Pyramid for Vernon County
2000 Census Age Pyramid for Vernon County

As of the census[14] of 2000, there were 28,056 people, 10,825 households, and 7,501 families residing in the county. The population density was 35 people per square mile (14/km2). There were 12,416 housing units at an average density of 16 per square mile (6/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 98.81% White, 0.06% Black or African American, 0.15% Native American, 0.21% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.27% from other races, and 0.48% from two or more races. 0.66% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 38.3% were of Norwegian, 26.9% German, 6.4% Irish and 6.1% English ancestry. 90.9% spoke English, 3.5% German, 1.8% Norwegian, 1.2% Pennsylvania Dutch and 1.0% Spanish as their first language.

There were 10,825 households, out of which 31.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.70% were married couples living together, 6.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.70% were non-families. 26.70% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.11.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 27.40% under the age of 18, 6.80% from 18 to 24, 25.30% from 25 to 44, 23.50% from 45 to 64, and 17.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 97.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.60 males.

In 2017, there were 434 births, giving a general fertility rate of 90.5 births per 1000 women aged 15–44, the fourth highest rate out of all 72 Wisconsin counties. Of these births, 123 occurred at home, second only to Clark County which had 184 home births.[15]

In 2010, the largest religious groups by reported number of adherents were ELCA Lutheran at 6,735 adherents, Catholic at 3,060 adherents, Amish at 2,786 adherents, United Methodist at 1,533 adherents, Wisconsin Synod Lutheran at 1,402 adherents, and Non-denominational Christian at 766 adherents.[16]

Economy

The county is home to the headquarters of Organic Valley, the world's largest cooperative of family farmers.[17][18]

Parks

Vernon County is home to multiple county and state parks.[19] The Kickapoo Valley Reserve, an 8600-acre natural reserve, is between the villages of La Farge and Ontario. Wildcat Mountain State Park is also in the county.

County Parks and Forests

Communities

Cities

Villages

Towns

Unincorporated communities

Gallery

Politics

Vernon County had been a Democratic-leaning county since the 1988 presidential election, but Republican Donald Trump won a plurality of the vote in 2016 and a majority of the vote in 2020.

United States presidential election results for Vernon County, Wisconsin[20]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 8,218 51.61% 7,457 46.83% 248 1.56%
2016 7,004 49.06% 6,371 44.63% 900 6.30%
2012 5,942 41.64% 8,044 56.37% 283 1.98%
2008 5,367 38.13% 8,463 60.13% 245 1.74%
2004 6,774 45.63% 7,924 53.38% 147 0.99%
2000 5,684 43.58% 6,577 50.42% 783 6.00%
1996 3,796 33.81% 5,572 49.63% 1,858 16.55%
1992 4,072 32.02% 5,673 44.61% 2,971 23.36%
1988 5,226 47.17% 5,754 51.94% 98 0.88%
1984 6,469 55.75% 5,051 43.53% 83 0.72%
1980 6,528 51.11% 5,501 43.07% 744 5.82%
1976 6,132 51.56% 5,534 46.54% 226 1.90%
1972 6,836 65.83% 3,407 32.81% 142 1.37%
1968 5,824 55.18% 3,666 34.73% 1,065 10.09%
1964 4,640 42.58% 6,242 57.28% 16 0.15%
1960 6,909 58.75% 4,836 41.12% 15 0.13%
1956 6,200 55.66% 4,923 44.19% 17 0.15%
1952 7,619 65.33% 4,032 34.57% 12 0.10%
1948 4,139 43.71% 5,226 55.18% 105 1.11%
1944 5,676 51.04% 5,409 48.64% 36 0.32%
1940 6,614 52.95% 5,776 46.24% 102 0.82%
1936 4,811 42.36% 6,044 53.22% 502 4.42%
1932 2,979 32.89% 5,939 65.57% 139 1.53%
1928 6,596 71.28% 2,559 27.65% 99 1.07%
1924 2,670 30.41% 406 4.62% 5,703 64.96%
1920 5,694 86.03% 627 9.47% 298 4.50%
1916 2,912 58.63% 1,830 36.84% 225 4.53%
1912 2,663 57.68% 1,253 27.14% 701 15.18%
1908 4,114 69.71% 1,561 26.45% 227 3.85%
1904 4,744 82.35% 762 13.23% 255 4.43%
1900 4,463 75.59% 1,268 21.48% 173 2.93%
1896 4,393 71.35% 1,627 26.43% 137 2.23%
1892 3,106 59.95% 1,440 27.79% 635 12.26%

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "QuickFacts: Vernon County, Wisconsin". Census.gov. Retrieved May 29, 2022.
  2. ^ "County Population Totals: 2010-2020". Retrieved June 20, 2021.
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  4. ^ Bad Axe (county). Wisconsinhistory.org. Retrieved on July 21, 2013.
  5. ^ Vernon County [origin of place name]. Wisconsinhistory.org. Retrieved on July 21, 2013.
  6. ^ "Winnebago Took Its Name from an Indian Tribe". The Post-Crescent. December 28, 1963. p. 14. Retrieved August 25, 2014 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  7. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  8. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  9. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  10. ^ Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  11. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 9, 2022. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  12. ^ "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on October 18, 2015. Retrieved January 24, 2014.
  13. ^ "2020 Decennial Census: Vernon County, Wisconsin". data.census.gov. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved July 8, 2022.
  14. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
  15. ^ "Annual Wisconsin Birth and Infant Mortality Report, 2017 P-01161-19 (June 2019): Detailed Tables". Archived from the original on June 19, 2019. Retrieved June 19, 2019.
  16. ^ thearda.com County Membership Report for Vernon County
  17. ^ "Food & Farming - Driftless Wisconsin Region Guide". Driftless Wisconsin Region Guide. Retrieved August 14, 2018.
  18. ^ "Why Organic Valley? | Leaders in Organic". www.organicvalley.coop. Retrieved August 14, 2018.
  19. ^ "Land and Water Resources". Vernon County. Retrieved June 6, 2019.
  20. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved November 11, 2020.

Further reading

Coordinates: 43°35′N 90°50′W / 43.59°N 90.83°W / 43.59; -90.83