Waupaca is a city in and the county seat of Waupaca County in the U.S. state of Wisconsin. The population was 6,069 at the 2010 census. The city is believed to be named after Sam Waupaca (or Chief Wapuka) of the Potawatomi tribe.
The city is located mostly within the Town of Waupaca, and it is politically independent of the town. A portion extends west into the adjacent Town of Farmington, and there is also a noncontiguous area of the city in the Town of Lind to the south. The city is divided into natural areas, city areas, and industrial areas.
Native American mound builders lived in the area prior to European settlement. At one time there were 72 earthwork mounds in the area, some of them ancient prehistoric works.
Before the 19th century, this area was occupied by the historic Menominee and Potowatomi tribes, both of whom spoke Algonquian languages. They had long traded with French colonists who traveled here from New France (Quebec).
European Americans began to settle here in the mid-19th century as part of their westward movement from New England and New York, sometimes after settling for a period in Ohio or Indiana.