Madison is a city located in Dane County Wisconsin. It is also the county seat of Dane County. With a 2020 population of 263,332, it is the 2nd largest city in Wisconsin (after Milwaukee) and the 85th largest city in the United States . Madison is currently growing at a rate of 0.70% annually and its population has increased by 12.92% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 233,209 in 2010. Madison reached it's highest population of 263,332 in 2021. Spanning over 101 miles, Madison has a population density of 3,319 people per square mile.
The average household income in Madison is $87,055 with a poverty rate of 16.88%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to $1,118 per month, and the median house value is $246,300. The median age in Madison is 31 years, 30.4 years for males, and 31.6 years for females.
Madison is the capital of the state of Wisconsin and the county seat of Dane County in the southern part of the state, about 122 miles northwest of Chicago, Illinois and 77 miles west of Milwaukee. Madison is the second-largest city in Wisconsin and the 83rd largest in the United States.
The Madison Metropolitan Statistical Area, including Dane, Iowa, and Columbia counties, has a population estimated at 578,000, the 86th largest metro area in the United States.
Madison is home to the third-largest congregation of Unitarian Universalists in the country, and the First Unitarian Society of Madison has its home in the Unitarian Meeting House, which was designed by world-famous architect and member, Frank Lloyd Wright. There are many Christian denominations present in the city, along with Buddhism, Hinduism and more. Long known as a center for non-theists, Madison is also home to the Freedom From Religion Foundation.
Madison Population Growth
Madison is the fastest-growing municipality in Wisconsin, with a population growth rate of almost 3% in 2011 and 2012. Madison has a high quality of life, which has helped its population grow nearly 11% from 2000 to 2008. By 2030, Madison is projected to have a population of 270,000.
Madison's history dates back to 1829 when former federal judge James Doty bought more than one thousand acres of forest and swamp land on the isthmus between Lakes Monona and Mendota. He intended to build a city. When the Wisconsin Territory was created seven years later, the legislature was tasked with choosing a permanent location for the capital. Doty lobbied for Madison as the new capital and offered buffalo robes to the cold legislators and promised the best lots in the city at a discount to undecided voters. The city -- which only existed on paper at this point -- was named the capital of the territory.
Madison was incorporated as a village in 1846 with a population of just over 600. When Wisconsin became a state two years later, Madison remained the capital, and it then became the site of the University of Wisconsin. It was incorporated as a city in 1856 with a population of nearly 6,700.
Madison served as the center for the Union Army in Wisconsin during the Civil War, and it was the last stop for soldiers heading to fight the Confederates. Camp Randall in Madison was used as a prison camp, military hospital and training camp, and it was absorbed into the University of Wisconsin and Camp Randall Stadium in 1917.