Get To Know The Oldest Cities + Towns In Minnesota
The state of Minnesota is a beautiful place full of all different kinds of landscapes from fields and streams, farmland, the bluffs on the mighty Mississippi river to the rocky North Shore, plus of course over 10,000 lakes. The state of Minnesota became the 32nd state of the Union on May 11, 1858, with some cities and towns already founded.
Minnesota's Oldest Cities & Towns
1) Brooklyn Park, Minnesota: Founded in 1850 and established in 1852
The theme for Brooklyn Park is "Unique, United, Undiscovered." This suburb is the sixth largest city in the state of Minnesota with a population of 86,000 people and the fourth largest city in the metro area. Located on the Mississippi River Brooklyn Park has almost 2,000 acres of Parkland and 120 miles of trails. They have a mix of retail, commercial, and industrial businesses and pride themselves on providing housing for every budget.
2) Minnetonka, Minnesota: Founded in 1850, Established in 1869
The area known as Minnetonka was sacred ground for Native Americans with its dense woods and excellent fishing on Lake Minnetonka. The population as of 2020 is 53, 781 people, and is home to many major corporate headquarters: UnitedHealth Group, Carlson Companies, and Cargill. This exclusive suburb is known to be an area with some beautiful homes around the lake.
3) Richfield, Minnesota: Founded in 1850, Established in 1908
The theme for Richfield is "The Urban Hometown." As Minneapolis and St. Paul were beginning to grow Richfield was known for its rich farmland, hence the name. The population as of 2020 was 36,993 and is home to Best Buy headquarters. Richfield's residents live within seven square miles of neighborhoods, parks, schools, and businesses.
4) Plymouth, Minnesota: Founded in 1855 and established as a town in 1857
After the civil war around 1880 the town of Plymouth had over 1,000 residents and farming was the main source of trade. Roads were then being built giving them access to other towns. Medicine Lake became a big tourist attraction and soon hotels were built near it. As of 2020, the population of Plymouth is 81,026.
5) St. Paul, Minnesota: Established in 1837 and became incorporated in 1854
In 1849 St. Paul became the capital city of the Minnesota Territory and became the state capital in 1858 when Minnesota was admitted into the union. The second largest city in the state with a population of 307,193 as of 20221 behind its twin sister Minneapolis, St. Paul has grown into a sports and entertainment hub, along with many major corporations based in the area.
6) Stillwater, Minnesota: Established in 1848 and founded in 1854
The motto for the city of Stillwater Is "The Gateway Of The North." Nestled in the bluffs of the St. Croix River it is considered the birthplace of Minnesota because the first territorial convention was held there that began the process of establishing the state of Minnesota. The population is 19,389 as of 2021. Stillwater has become a huge tourist destination for both locals and visitors with many activities offered year-round.
7) Owatonna, Minnesota: Founded in 1854
The town Owatonna got its name after the Dakota name for the straight river “Wakpá Owóthaŋna.” A historically rich town they still preserve some of the things that back in time made the town what it is today, like the Orphanage Museum and the Village of Yesteryear. you can also catch an outdoor concert in the park or enjoy their many hiking and biking trails. The population is 5,000 as of 2021.
8) Edina, Minnesota: Founded in 1860 and incorporated in 1888
Edina began as a small farming community and then became one of Minneapolis's first incorporated suburbs. It is home to many major corporations like caribou Coffee and Edina Realty. This suburb is known for its shopping centers with Southdale Mall being hailed as the oldest mall in the nation. The population is 53,494 as of 2021. The city of Edina prides itself on being an upscale dining and shopping destination along with a high school hockey dynasty.
9) Grand Rapids, Minnesota: Founded in 1872 and incorporated in 1891
The motto for Grand Rapids is "Inspired By Nature" and this truly charming small town is a perfect getaway for families and friends. With great fishing lakes, hiking trails, and unique shops this a great place for a girl's weekend or a romantic getaway. The population is 11,126 as of 2021. I have some good friends who live in Grand Rapids and every time I go there for a visit we always have the best time and I have met some of the nicest people around.
10) Anoka, Minnesota: Founded in 1844 and Incorporated in 1878
The name Anoka was derived from two Indian words. "The native Dakota used A-NO-KA-TAN-HAN, meaning “on both sides”, or “from both sides”, referring to its location on the banks of the Rum River." This is is the furthest suburb of the metro but is only 20 minutes for Minneapolis and St. Paul. Anoka claims to be the "Halloween Capitol Of The World" since it is believed that they were the first to celebrate Halloween. The population is 18,155 as of 2023. Besides, its natural beauty this suburb also offers excellent shopping and dining as well.