About Crawford County

Fur traders first impacted the economic development of Crawford County in the 1700s when Prairie du Chien became a major trading post along the confluence of the Mississippi and Wisconsin Rivers. Early settlers prospered through the fur trade. Abundant woodlands served as rich hunting and trapping grounds. Other early industries, such as button manufacturing, also relied on natural resources – in this case Mississippi River clam shells. Rivers such as the Kickapoo, streams, and spring-fed lakes provided still other opportunities for fishing or hunting waterfowl.


As two great American rivers, the Mississippi and Wisconsin offered clear transportation advantages, facilitating commerce that increased the area’s population. Cities, towns and villages were established and grew where there was access to waterways. These same natural resources continue to play a major role in the manufacturing, agricultural and tourist industries into the present.


Crawford County is one of Wisconsin’s two original counties, established in 1818 under President James Monroe. Prairie du Chien, the county seat, is the oldest community on the Upper Mississippi River. It is home to the Fort Crawford Medical Museum and the Villa Louis estate. Other larger communities are Gays Mills, Eastman, Wauzeka, Mount Sterling, Soldiers Grove, and Ferryville.


Top Ten Employers

Employer Service or Product Number of Employees
Cabela’s Wholesale Inc Mail‐order houses 1000 or more employees
3M Co Abrasive product manufacturing 500‐999 employees
Miniature Precision Components All other plastics product manufacturing 250‐499 employees
Prairie du Chien Memorial Hospital General medical and surgical hospitals 250‐499 employees
Wal-Mart Warehouse clubs and supercenters 250‐499 employees
Design Homes Inc. Prefabricated wood building manufacturing 100‐249 employees
Department of Corrections Correctional institutions 100‐249 employees
Prairie Industries Inc. Packaging and labeling services 100‐249 employees
Clinicare Corp Residential mental and substance abuse care 100‐249 employees
Cabela’s Sporting goods stores 100‐249 employees

Source: WI DWD, Bureau ofWorkforce Training, QCEW, OEAspecial request, Sept. 2013


Population and Demographics

Apr 1, 2010 Census Jan 1, 2013 Estimate Numeric Change Proportional Change
United States 308,400,408 315,090,923 6,690,515 2.2%
Wisconsin 5,686,986 5,717,110 30,124 0.5%
Crawford County 16,644 16,658 14 0.1%
    Prairie du Chien, City 5,911 5,888 ‐23 ‐0.4%
    Prairie du Chien, Town 1,023 1,014 ‐9 ‐0.9%
    Bridgeport, Town 990 991 1 0.1%
    Clayton, Town 958 949 ‐9 ‐0.9%
    Seneca, Town 866 885 19 2.2%
    Eastman, Town 739 746 7 0.9%
    Wauzeka, Village 711 701 ‐10 ‐1.4%
    Freeman, Town 686 698 12 1.7%
    Utica, Town 661 671 10 1.5%
    Soldiers Grove, Village 592 584 ‐8 ‐1.4%

Source: Demographic Services Center, Wisconsin Department of Administration

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