Family History and Genealogy Services

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Wisconsin Genealogy Resources

Probate Records and Wills


Probate records in Wisconsin include wills, guardianship, administrator or executor bonds, and inventories. These records were usually established with the formation of the country and are the responsibility of the register of probate for the county. The Family History Library has microfilmed some Wisconsin probate files. Copies of these films and some unfilmed probate records are in the holdings of the appropriate Area Research Centers of the Wisconsin Historical Society.

The Family History Library has microfilm copies of probate files and indexes from some counties and is continuing to acquire additional records. For example, Milwaukee County microfilms include probate packets from 1850–1910 (on 1,097 FHL films beginning with film 1020046; computer number 10531), wills and estates from 1838–1923 with an index (on 107 films beginning with film 1023331; computer number 178237), and a general card index for 1838–1915 (on 73 films beginning with film 1292413).


A typical probate packet includes such documents as petitions, grants of administration, inventories, letters testamentary affidavits, statements of creditors, accounts, and guardianship decrees.