State capital of Wisconsin, 193 km/120 mi northwest of Chicago and 120 km/74 mi west of Milwaukee, on an isthmus between lakes Mendota and Monona; seat of Dane County; population (2000 est) 208,100. It is the centre of a rich agricultural region; industries include agricultural machinery, meat packing, battery production, and medical equipment. It was incorporated in 1846 and made a city in 1856.
History The area was first inhabited by the Winnebago nation. It was later settled by James Doty in 1829 and was named after President James Madison.
Features Madison is the seat of the University of Wisconsin-Madison (1849), one of the country's largest universities, Edgewood College (1927), and the US Forest Products Laboratory (1910). The city contains several large libraries including the Wisconsin State Library, the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Library, and the University Library. There is an arboretum (485 ha/1,198 acres) nearby and the city is home to the Olbrich Botanical Gardens.
There are 121 entries on the national register of historic places including the State Capitol (1906) and various university buildings. Other attractions include the Henry Vilas Zoological Society, Madison Children's Centre, Madison Symphony Orchestra, and Madison Ballet.