In 1845 emigrants from the canton of Glarus in Switzerland, leaving their homeland because of dire economic conditions, established a colony in southern Wisconsin and named it New Glarus. Over the following years, more Swiss from various cantons settled in New Glarus and other areas of Green County. Throughout its history, the community has nurtured its Swiss cultural heritage. Today, the people of New Glarus maintain a high level of interest in the village's origins, history, and family lineages, and continue to honor its heritage through festivals, historical museums, and the preservation of buildings, historical artifacts, and genealogical information.
This collection focuses primarily on the first 100 years of New Glarus's history. It includes narratives about the settlement and early history of the village, family records from the first church in New Glarus, tax rolls of the Town of New Glarus, old maps and plat books of Green County, the first yearbook of the New Glarus High School, and photographs of individuals and families, school groups, community organizations, events, street scenes, businesses, and agriculture. The New Glarus Public Library, the New Glarus Historical Society, and the Swiss United Church of Christ of New Glarus have collaborated to make available to the public these selected materials documenting the history of New Glarus and the surrounding area.