The first ever televised political debate was held in Wisconsin during the 1950 U.S. Senate race between Joseph McCarthy and Robert La Follette Jr.
Sawyer County is located in the northern part of Wisconsin and holds a rich history that dates back thousands of years. The area was originally inhabited by several Native American tribes, including the Ojibwe and the Dakota Sioux. They utilized the region's abundant natural resources for survival, relying on hunting, fishing, and agriculture.

European settlement in the region began in the mid-19th century. The first permanent settlers arrived in the 1850s, establishing small communities and farms. Initially part of the larger Chippewa County, Sawyer County was officially formed in 1883. It was named after Philetus Sawyer, a prominent Wisconsin politician and businessman.

The timber industry played a crucial role in the early development of Sawyer County. The area boasted vast forests of pine, spruce, and other valuable tree species, attracting lumber companies and loggers. Logging camps sprung up, and sawmills were constructed to process the harvested timber. This industry became the economic backbone of the region, fueling growth and prosperity.

Over time, as the timber industry began to decline, Sawyer County gradually shifted its focus to tourism and recreation. The county's pristine lakes, forests, and picturesque landscapes attracted visitors, leading to the establishment of resorts, campgrounds, and recreational facilities. Today, Sawyer County remains a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, offering opportunities for fishing, boating, hunting, hiking, and more.

Throughout its history, Sawyer County has transformed from a wild wilderness inhabited by Native Americans to a thriving community that showcases the beauty of Wisconsin's northwoods. Its rich cultural heritage, natural attractions, and recreational opportunities make it a unique and vibrant part of the state's history.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Sawyer County, Wisconsin.

  • 1840 - The Ojibwe people cede the land comprising Sawyer County to the United States government through treaties.
  • 1865 - First American settlers arrive in the area now known as Sawyer County.
  • 1877 - Sawyer County is officially established, named after Philetus Sawyer, a prominent businessman and Wisconsin senator.
  • Late 1800s - Logging becomes a major industry in Sawyer County, attracting many new residents.
  • Early 1900s - Tourism begins to develop in the area as visitors are drawn to the county's natural beauty, lakes, and forests.
  • 1926 - The construction of the Chief Lake Dam creates the Chippewa Flowage, which becomes a popular fishing and recreational area.
  • Mid 1900s - The economy of Sawyer County diversifies, with agriculture, manufacturing, and tourism playing important roles.
  • 1960s - The Lac Courte Oreilles Reservation is established in southern Sawyer County, providing a cultural and economic center for the Ojibwe people.
  • 1990s - The county experiences growth in real estate and second-home ownership as more people discover the area's natural beauty and recreational opportunities.
  • 2004 - The Nelson Lake State Park is created, providing visitors with more opportunities for outdoor activities.
  • Present - Sawyer County continues to be a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, offering a range of recreational activities, natural wonders, and cultural experiences.