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North Prairie, Wisconsin
Location of North Prairie in Waukesha County, Wisconsin.
Location of North Prairie in Waukesha County, Wisconsin.
Country  United States
State  Wisconsin
County Waukesha
 • Total 2.78 sq mi (7.19 km2)
 • Land 2.75 sq mi (7.13 km2)
 • Water 0.03 sq mi (0.06 km2)
948 ft (289 m)
 • Total 2,141
 • Estimate 
 • Density 809.30/sq mi (312.48/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
FIPS code 55-58400
GNIS feature ID 1570484
Municipal building for North Prairie, Wisconsin
The Village of North Prairie municipal building.

North Prairie is a village in Waukesha County, Wisconsin. It is located in the Town of Genesee, near the town's southwestern corner. The population was 2,141 at the 2010 census.


Three prospectors from Mukwonago named the village in 1826. Blacksmiths from Eagle, Chas. Raynaus and Mr. Denny, were the first settlers to arrive that following year, although the first claim came from Stillman Smith. Farmers began to settle the North Prairie in the 1830s to raise their prize livestock and grain. The population grew and in 1840 Raynaus began the first school from his house.

By 1850 the village had a general store and post office. The Milwaukee & Mississippi Railroad went through in 1852, but the village remained mostly rural. North Prairie would later become one of the area's more noted residential centers. A rumor of oil in 1866 enabled the North Prairie Petroleum Company to fund $50,000 "to dig a hole & extract oil or minerals," but this venture was a failure.

St. John's Lutheran Church was built in 1877 and North Prairie later incorporated in 1919. Morey Milk Condensery opened a plant in 1917 and by 1920 North Prairie saw a jump in growth due to this industry. Morey Milk employed over 200 people and became a primary source of income to more than 85% of the village households. The plant was sold in 1924 and is no longer in operation.

In an interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in 2003, the previous owners of Bill's Self-Service and Mini-Mart, Bill and Avis McKenzie, described how the village boomed in the 1940s and 1950s. "We had three grocery stores, a hardware store, a mill, a granary, a post office, a drug store with eating counter, a few taverns with eating space, and three service stations, which at that time all had garages for car repair... One by one, they left town. Now we have one tavern, two service stations, one diner - and Bill's Service."


North Prairie is located at 42°55'59" North, 88°24'4" West (42.933087, -88.401050).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 2.84 square miles (7.36 km2), of which, 2.81 square miles (7.28 km2) of it is land and 0.03 square miles (0.08 km2) is water.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1920 263
1930 292 11.0%
1940 375 28.4%
1950 424 13.1%
1960 489 15.3%
1970 669 36.8%
1980 938 40.2%
1990 1,322 40.9%
2000 1,571 18.8%
2010 2,141 36.3%
2019 (est.) 2,228 4.1%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 2,141 people, 773 households, and 604 families residing in the village. The population density was 761.9 inhabitants per square mile (294.2/km2). There were 799 housing units at an average density of 284.3 per square mile (109.8/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 98.0% White, 0.3% African American, 0.5% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 0.5% from other races, and 0.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.0% of the population.

There were 773 households, of which 38.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 68.6% were married couples living together, 6.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.4% had a male householder with no wife present, and 21.9% were non-families. 16.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.76 and the average family size was 3.14.

The median age in the village was 41 years. 26.3% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.8% were from 25 to 44; 34.6% were from 45 to 64; and 8.6% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the village was 49.7% male and 50.3% female.

Parks and recreation

  • Veterans Park located off Highway 59 contains a garden area with historic stone houses that have been restored in the past ten years by Don Beranek. It also maintains a pavilion, tennis courts, a children's play area and other amenities.
  • Village Park, located on Karin Drive, features a pavilion, softball diamond, soccer fields and a children's play area.
  • Broadlands Golf Club, located off Highway 59, opened to the public in August 2000. The golf course has 18 championship style holes and has a driving range. The golf club also features a club house, which has a banquet hall.


Prairie View Elementary School is located on Highway E, set into the gently rolling hills and oak savanna of the kettle moraine area of Wisconsin. The elementary school is a part of the Mukwonago Area School District. There are 2-3 teachers in each grade.

Notable people

  • John Grimshaw, Wisconsin State Representative
  • Daniel Kelly, Wisconsin Supreme Court justice
  • Arthur Oliver Smith, industrial magnate and founder of the A.O. Smith Corporation
  • Gorman Thomas, MLB player
  • William Zeiman, Wisconsin State Representative
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