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Waukesha is proud to have an identity that sets it apart from Milwaukee.

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Waukesha is proud to have an identity that sets it apart from Milwaukee.

Waukesha, a city of about 70,000 people, is only 20 miles west of Milwaukee, but its residents have long taken pride in their hometown identity.

Waukesha was established in 1834 along the Fox River, in an area famous for natural springs known to have healing properties. In the mid-1800s, those waterfalls attracted wealthy visitors, including Mary Todd Lincoln.

And although it is still referred to as “Spring City”, Waukesha later developed into a largely blue-collar community, including Waukesha Foundry, SPX Transformers, Metaltech and others.

In recent years, the surrounding county has become more politically conservative. Waukesha is known as one of the “Wow” counties around Milwaukee (the others are Ozouki and Washington) that are a major battlefield in Wisconsin, themselves the narrowest of the battlefields.

The New York Times political correspondent, Asted W. “If Wisconsin is Belvedere State up for November’s general election, Waukesha County may be the most important region in the state,” Herndon wrote in July 2020.

Waukesha and other well-educated, affluent counties north and west of Milwaukee have given Republican landslides for decades, defying a Democratic shift to suburbia in other northern states. Yet when then-President Trump easily won Waukesha County in 2020, his margin fell by more than five percent compared to 2016 and President Biden came ahead in Waukesha City.

The town made headlines in 2014 when two 12-year-old girls, who wanted to favor a sinister fictional character named Slender Man, stabbed a classmate 19 times by seducing them in a park, leaving parents in Waukesha Surprised.

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The girls told officers that they believed Slender Man was real, that he lived in a mansion in Wisconsin’s Northwoods and that they needed to kill himself to prove himself worthy of him. They were charged as adults for attempted murder.

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