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Lake Geneva, Wisconsin

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Title: Lake Geneva, Wisconsin  
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Lake Geneva, Wisconsin

Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Main Street Historic District in  Lake Geneva
Location of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Location of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Country United States
State Wisconsin
County Walworth
 • Mayor Jim Connors
 • Administrator Dennis Jordan
 • City Council Current Council Members
 • Total 6.55 sq mi (16.96 km2)
 • Land 6.54 sq mi (16.94 km2)
 • Water 0.01 sq mi (0.03 km2)
Elevation[2] 879 ft (268 m)
Population (2010)[3]
 • Total 7,651
 • Estimate (2012[4]) 7,710
 • Density 1,169.9/sq mi (451.7/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 53147
Area code(s) 262 Exchanges: 248,249,348
FIPS code 55-41450[5]
GNIS feature ID 1581223[2]

Lake Geneva is a city in Walworth County, Wisconsin, USA. The population was 7,651 at the 2010 census. A resort city located on Geneva Lake, it is popular with tourists from metropolitan Chicago and Milwaukee.


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
  • Demographics 3
    • 2010 census 3.1
    • 2000 census 3.2
  • Government 4
  • Notable people 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • Further reading 8
  • External links 9


Originally called "Muck-Suck" (Big Foot) for a Potawatomi chief,[6] the city was later named Geneva after the town of Geneva, New York,[7] located on Seneca Lake, to which early settler John Brink saw a resemblance. Geneva, to avoid confusion with the nearby town of Geneva, Illinois, was renamed Lake Geneva; later the lake was renamed Geneva Lake.

Railroad access from Chicago made the area a popular summer retreat for the barons of wealth in lumber, cattle, oil, steel, cement, manufacturing, and durable goods (e.g., Morton Salt, Wrigley Chewing Gum), with mansions and large homes such as Stone Manor and Black Point built on the lake from the 1850s, through the heyday of the Roaring 20s, and up to the present day. The city was then known as "The Newport of the West." In the early automobile era, the city hosted the first modern drive-in motel designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, and later during Prohibition smaller lake towns around the area became a haven for Al Capone and other mobsters.

In 1954, Lake Geneva was one of the three finalists for the location of the new United States Air Force Academy, but ultimately lost to Colorado Springs, Colorado.[8]

In 1968, Hugh Hefner built his first Playboy resort in Lake Geneva.[9] The club closed in 1981 and in 1982 was converted into the Americana Resort, and in 1993 to the present Grand Geneva Resort.[10][11]

Royal Records (formerly Shade Tree Studios) was a Lake Geneva music recording studio where artists such as Ministry, Cheap Trick, Queensryche, Crash Test Dummies, Iron Maiden, Nine Inch Nails, and Skidrow have recorded albums.


Lake Geneva is located at (42.592380, -88.434424).[12] The city is situated on the northeast bay of Geneva Lake on relatively flat ground, with some steep hills and bluffs.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.55 square miles (16.96 km2), of which, 6.54 square miles (16.94 km2) is land and 0.01 square miles (0.03 km2) is water.[1]


2010 census

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 7,651 people, 3,323 households, and 1,879 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,169.9 inhabitants per square mile (451.7/km2). There were 4,225 housing units at an average density of 646.0 per square mile (249.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 87.6% White, 0.6% African American, 0.2% Native American, 1.5% Asian, 8.5% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 17.3% of the population.

There were 3,323 households of which 27.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.2% were married couples living together, 11.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 43.5% were non-families. 36.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 3.02.

The median age in the city was 39.8 years. 22.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 8.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.5% were from 25 to 44; 26.8% were from 45 to 64; and 16.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.5% male and 52.5% female.

2000 census

As of the census[5] of 2000, there were 7,148 people, 3,053 households, and 1,801 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,425.1 people per square mile (549.8/km²). There were 3,757 housing units at an average density of 749.0 per square mile (289.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 90.81% White, 0.90% African American, 0.11% Native American, 1.08% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 5.16% from other races, and 1.89% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 14.75% of the population. As of the 2010 United States Census there were 7,651 people for a population growth of 7.04% from the 2000 United States Census to the 2010 United States Census.

There were 3,053 households out of which 27.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.1% were married couples living together, 9.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.0% were non-families. 33.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 3.01.

In the city the population was spread out with 23.0% under the age of 18, 9.8% from 18 to 24, 29.9% from 25 to 44, 22.4% from 45 to 64, and 15.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 94.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $40,924, and the median income for a family was $54,543. Males had a median income of $38,930 versus $25,671 for females. The per capita income for the city was $21,536. About 4.7% of families and 7.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.0% of those under age 18 and 5.5% of those age 65 or over.


The city of Lake Geneva operates under a mayor-council form of government. The city has four aldermanic districts with two representatives per district. It is managed by a full-time city administrator. The city has an elected attorney, judge and part-time treasurer.[15]

Notable people

See also


  1. ^ a b
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ a b
  4. ^
  5. ^ a b
  6. ^ The Encyclopedia of Wisconsin, 1990,
  7. ^
  8. ^ Steven A. Simon, "A Half-Century of History", Fifty Years of Excellence: Building Leaders of Character for the Nation, 2004.
  9. ^
  10. ^ Rhonda Mix. "Grand Geneva: 45 Years of R&R". McHenry County Living, August 5, 2013. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  11. ^ By David Young"Playboy's Former Resort Gets Facelift". The Chicago Tribune, March 14, 1994. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^

Further reading

  • Fogle, Phil. Grassroots—Lake Geneva: An Illustrated History of the Geneva Lake Area (The Centennial Book). Big Foot Publishing Company: Williams Bay, Wisconsin. 1986.

External links

  • City of Lake Geneva
  • Lake Geneva Chamber of Commerce
  • Geneva Lake Museum of History
  • Images of Lake Geneva : Historic photographs and postcards, at the University of Wisconsin–Madison
  • Sanborn fire insurance maps: 1892 1900 1912
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