MADISON, Wis. -

The Wisconsin Supreme Court said that Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson is now the longest serving Supreme Court justice in state history.

The court said Abrahamson broke the record on Wednesday when she marked 36 years, seven months and four days in office. That passes the previous longest tenure of Orsamus Cole, who served from 1855 to 1892.

Abrahamson, 79, joined the court in 1976 and has been chief justice since 1996. She was the first woman to serve on the court. She was re-elected to a 10-year term in 2009.

Abrahamson has written about 500 majority opinions and about 400 dissents.

The calculation on the length of Abrahamson's term was done by Madison attorney and legal historian Joseph Ranney.