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Blue Earth County, Minnesota

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Please add profiles of those who were born, lived or died in Blue Earth County, Minnesota.

Official Website


The area of Blue Earth County was once known as the "Big Woods", occupied by the Dakota Indians. French explorer Pierre-Charles Le Sueur was an early explorer in this area, arriving where the Minnesota and Blue Earth rivers meet. He made an unsuccessful attempt to mine copper from the blue earth. The area remained under French control until 1803 when it passed to the United States in the Louisiana Purchase.

When Minnesota became a territory in 1849, the territorial government became interested in settling the river valley. In 1850 the first steamboat trip, starting in St. Paul, traveled on the Minnesota River and came to the Blue Earth River. The first white settlers, P. K. Johnson and Henry Jackson, debarked and settled in present-day Mankato. The ratification of the Mendota and Traverse des Sioux treaties in 1851 effectively forced the Dakota to move to nearby reservations.

The county of Blue Earth was created after a division of the Minnesota Territory on March 5, 1853, from portions of Dakota County and free territory. It was named for the Blue Earth River. The first government officials were appointed by Alexander Ramsey, the territorial governor. That October the first election was held, with 22 ballots being taken.

Unfulfilled treaty promises and starvation on the reservation led to the Dakota War of 1862, which resulted in Dakota defeat and the largest mass execution in US history in Mankato. In 1868 the railroads' arrival helped with the growth and development of many areas, including Blue Earth. The railroads allowed immigrants and Yankee settlers into the area.

Adjacent Counties

Cities, Townships & Communities

Amboy | Beauford | Butternut Valley | Cambria | Caresco | Danville | Decoria | Eagle Lake | Garden City | Good Thunder | Jamestown | Judson | Lake Crystal | Le Ray | Lime | Lincoln | Lyra | Madison Lake | Mankato | Mapleton | Marysburg | McPherson | Medo | Minnesota Lake (part) | North Mankato (part) | Pemberton | Pleasant Mound | Rapidan | Saint Clair | Shelby | Skyline | Smiths Mill | South Bend | Sterling | Vernon Center



National Register of Historic Places