Wood County Townships
The following section gives a brief history of every township in Wood County from Robert S Rudolph's
Wood County Place Names,
along with a list of the cites and villages in each township. See the book for more detailed information.
Click on a township to go directly there.
These are not cities, villages or towns in the official sense,
but a list of settlements, past and present. If a settlement has a former
name or alternate spelling, it is contained in parentheses, for example:
Port Edwards (Frenchtown). An asterisk (*) indicates the name is listed in
multiple townships because it is right on the border. Post Offices without
known settlements are not included.
Grand Rapids |
Port Edwards |
Arpin Township is named for the original village of
Arpin, about 3/4 miles east of the current village. It was established by
John and Antoine Arpin in the early 1890s around their sawmill. The present
village began to develop shortly afterward around the railroad depot that was
established to serve the Arpin's milling settlement. Arpin Township was
organized on February 13, 1901 (effective April, 1901).
Cities & Villages: Arpin.
Vanished Settlements: Martin's Town.
Auburndale Township was first organized in 1874 and reduced to its
present area in 1882. Named for the village of Auburndale, which was first
settled in 1871 by Robert Conner.
Cities & Villages: Auburndale.
Cameron Township was organized on November 18, 1903 and named in honor of James W Cameron,
a prominent Vesper lumberman and banker who died in 1902. He was also president of the
First National Bank in Grand Rapids and served two terms as chairman of the county board.
Cary Township was first organized on February 13, 1901 (effective April, 1901) and is
named after Cary, a former shipping point on the Milwaukee, Dexterville and Northern
railway (later the Milwaukee Road) established by George Hiles near his granite quarry.
This shipping point was discontinued in 1933. Note that the name is spelled
"Carey" in some resources.
Vanished Settlements: Amelia.
Cranmoor Township was organized on November 10, 1903 (effective April, 1904). It was
named after a former shipping point for cranberries on the Milwaukee Road, near the
intersection of county trunks D and J. The original name, "Bearss Marsh" was
officially changed to "Saranac" on July 8, 1897, and then to Cranmoor
(from "cranberry" and "moor") on June 21, 1898.
Dexter Township was first established on March 10, 1858 and included
almost the entire western half of Wood County. The boundaries were changed
in 1872, 1884, 1901 and finally in 1902. The township is named after
Dexterville, settled in October 1950 by George Hiles and H Searles, who
established a lumber mill there. There are several possible sources for the
name, and according to tradition, Dexterville was named after George Hiles'
white mule, Dexter.
Cities & Villages: Dexterville, Veedum (Vedum).
Vanished Settlements: Scranton.
Grand Rapids Township was first established in 1850 as one of the
townships of Portage County, named after the village of Grand Rapids which
it contained. When Wood County was created, it was the only township and
included all the county's territory. Grand Rapids village was originally the
part of Wisconsin Rapids on the east side of the Wisconsin River and named
after the rapids along that part of the river. These rapids were known as
the Grand Rapids as early as 1839. Since then, dams have eliminated the
Cities & Villages: Biron, Kellner, Wisconsin Rapids (Centralia, Grand Rapids
A township organized on February 13, 1901 as New Vesper Township after
the village of Vesper. The name was changed to Hansen Township on May 9,
1901, apparently after the Hansen settlement which was was located at the
junction that is today called Seneca Corners. It has also been known as
Seneca, Forest City and Little Mill.
Cities & Villages: Vesper*.
Vanished Settlements: Seneca Corners* (Hansen, Seneca, Forest City,
Organized on November 15, 1901 (effective April, 1902), Hiles Township is
named in honor of George Hiles, a powerful lumberman and land speculator in
Lincoln Township was organized on December 25, 1861 and was
subsequently vacated. However, Johnson Township, organized on March 14,
1868, was renamed Lincoln Township on June 22, 1868 and reduced to its
present size in 1878. Named after Abraham Lincoln.
Cities & Villages: Bakerville, Nasonville*.
Marshfield Township was organized on December 3, 1875. It was reduced in
size in 1881 when Richfield Township was formed, in 1883 when Marshfield was
incorporated as a city, and in 1903 when Cameron Township was formed. There
are several possibilities for the source of the name. See the book listed
above for a detailed review.
Cities & Villages: Hewitt (Section 28 or "Achtundzwanzig" in
German, Kreuser, Hewitt's Station), Marshfield.
Milladore Township was established on February 15, 1882 and reorganized
in 1885 (effective April, 1886). Named for the village of Milladore, which
was originally called Mill Creek after the nearby stream. It was renamed
Milladore after the postal authorities rejected Mill Creek as the name of
Cities & Villages: Blenker (Sherry Station), Milladore (Mill Creek).
Port Edwards Township was organized on February 11, 1874 and reorganized
in 1903. Named for the village of Port Edwards, originally called Frenchtown
due to the number of French Canadians living there. The name Port Edwards
evidently dates to 1864 and is named after John Edwards Sr., who with Henry
Clinton is supposed to have established a sawmill in Frenchtown around 1840.
Cities & Villages: Nekoosa, Port Edwards
Vanished Settlements: Pointe Basse (Pointe Bas, Point Bass, Pointe
Remington Township was first established on July 15, 1868. The boundaries
were changed several times and have remained unchanged since May 9, 1901.
The township is named after the former village of Remington which was named
for H W Remington, a lawyer, lumberman and farmer who came to Wisconsin in
1848. The village is supposed to have been settled in 1860 and was later
abandoned while the neighboring village of Babcock prospered due to the
railroad division point established there.
Cities & Villages: Babcock.
Vanished Settlements: Remington.
Richfield Township was organized on November 18, 1881 (effective April
1882). The origin of the name is uncertain, although one report is the name
was chosen because the township had fertile soil.
Cities & Villages: Bethel.
Rock Township was organized on January 23, 1878 (effective April 1878)
and, like Richfield Township, might have been named because of the rocky
Cities & Villages: Lindsey (Lindsay), Nasonville*.
Vanished Settlements: Hogan (Hougan).
Rudolph Township was established on October 8, 1856 and had about 9
boundary changes before getting its present boundaries in 1885. Named in
honor of Frederick Rudolph Hecox, the first white child to be born in the
area of the original township.
Cities & Villages: Rudolph.
Vanished Settlements: Worden (Doudville), Reed's Mill.
Organized as a township on January 9, 1857 and reduced to its present
size in 1875. It was named after the Saratoga settlement, originally called
Ten Mile Creek for the nearby stream. Origin of the name Saratoga is
unknown. It may have been named for another place in the US named Saratoga.
Vanished Settlements: Saratoga (Ten Mile Creek).
Hemlock Township, organized on June 19, 1857 was changed to Seneca
Township on February 4, 1861. It underwent many boundary changes until 1861,
and then again until November 10, 1903 (effective April 1904).
Apparently named for Seneca, which was within the original boundaries Seneca
was a former settlement in Hansen and Sigel townships, around three lumber
mills: Tuttle's Mill, Stearn's Mill and Scott's Mill. The settlement was
also know at various times as Forest City, Little Mill and Hansen, and later
as Seneca Corners.
Cities & Villages: Altdorf.
Sherry Township was organized on November 10, 1885 (effective April
1886). Named for Sherry, a hamlet on County F at Mill Creek, which was named
for Henry Sherry, part owner of a sawmill established there around 1880 by
the firm of Sherry and Briggs.
Cities & Villages: Sherry.
Organized on January 10, 1863 and reorganized in 1885, Sigel Township is
named in honor of Franz Sigel, a brigadier-general for the Union Army in the
Civil War. Other spellings of the township name are Seigel, Seagel and
Cities & Villages: Vesper*.
Vanished Settlements: Seneca Corners* (Hansen, Seneca, Forest
City, Little Mill).
Wood Township was organized on February 10, 1874 and was reorganized in
1901. A Wood Post Office had been established on the road between
Dexterville and Pittsville, apparently named for Wood County or for Joseph
Wood. The PO name was changed to Pittsville PO in 1875.
Cities & Villages: Pittsville (Pitt's Mill).
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