Tricounty News

Early history of Kimball is filled with items of interest

Reprinted from the Tri-County Messenger dated Thursday, October 1, 1936. V. H. Mason, Editor

Part I

Records of Stearns County disclose that the land upon which the original townsite of Kimball was platted was transferred from the government by patent. That part lying south of a line from the Methodist parsonage to a point in front of the Mrs. S. J. Phillips, Sr., residence, was transferred to Henry P. Welsh on April 10, 1861 and that part lying north of such line being transferred to Nicholas B. Matthews July 20, 1869.

After a few transfers, title passed to Mack J. Kennedy, W.D. Washburn and Michael L. Patten, and they dedicated the plat of the townsite to the public April 4, 1887. Maine Prairie Township of which Kimball was a part, organized June 1860.

Between the time of the arrival of the first settlers in 1856 and the founding of the village, the territory immediately adjacent to the village was used as camp and battle grounds by many roving bands of Indians. An early history of Maine Prairie, by E.H. Atwood, tells us that a pitched battle between the Sioux and Chippewa tribes took place on the heights just north of Willow Creek, which would be the east portion of the village.

Following the Civil War and prior to the coming of the railroad, several homesteaders had settled in the immediate vicinity, some of whom were the Kennedys, Pattens, Metcalfs, Mielkes, Adolphs, Hoefts, and Loomans. In this connection, it may be well to state that of the various men who homesteaded land in this vicinity, Adolph Looman is the only one still living. He homesteaded what is now the August Hoeft farm, later purchasing and moving to the place where he now resides on the northwest edge of the village. Adolph filed on his homestead five days after becoming 21 years old in August, 1871.

School District No. 80, the Kimball district, was organized in 1869 with the schoolhouse located one-half mile north of the village, being moved to Kimball in 1890, and after being replaced by a new school house 40 x 70, the following year, was sold and moved to where it now stands, owned and occupied by the Douglass Drug Store.

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Daylight saving begins March 14. Need an affordable great getaway? Travel back in time and visit our booth Saturday, March 27, at Kimball's seventh Kimball Business and Community Expo. Dozens of exhibits, prizes, samples, entertainment and more.

For our 10th birthday, we're giving presents, not getting them. We look forward to sharing another page in history with you between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Of all the things you might forget in March, don't let the March 27 Expo be one of them. Best of all, it's free. Mark your calendar.

The interest in the Kimball area's past has never been greater than it is today, which makes it a particular honor to be sharing Kimball's rich history during this time. Visit the Kimball Area Historical Society booth during the March 27th Expo.

Remember these important dates:

March 27 - Expo, at Kimball Area High School, south entrance.

April 17 - Historical Society Board of Directors meeting 10 a.m. Triple R Grill & Bar.

April 27 - Grasshopper Plague featured at Historical Society event city hall.

Why is it so important to connect people with their roots? It provides continuity in our lives. Welcome to all recent new members. Won't you consider joining our team, too? To submit your stories and photos, renew or place membership, make tax-deductible donations in general or for the city hall restoration, please contact the Kimball Area Historical Society at Box 100, Kimball MN 55353, or by phone and e-mail (320) 398-5250, or 398-5743, or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Make more memories at Kimball"s 2010 Expo

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