History

Long Prairie Township, organized March 12, 1867, was occupied in 1848-55 by the agency of a reservation for the Winnebago Indians. Long Prairie, the county seat, was platted in May 1867 and was incorporated as a village on December 22, 1883. The city was named after the Long Prairie River that flows through the county to the Crow Wing River. The stream was named for a long and relatively narrow prairie, from a half mile to one mile wide, bordering its east side for about 20 miles, from Lake Charlotte and Long Prairie village northward to the west line of Fawn Lake Township. When the post office was established in 1850, David Olmsted was the postmaster until he moved to St. Paul in 1853; he was influential in Todd County and the state, and Olmsted County is named for him.

The Todd County Creamery Association served as a hub of activity at the turn of the century, as dairy farming was popular within the community.

As a thriving farming community, Long Prairie developed at the turn of the century to include a bustling downtown, the completion of a beautiful courthouse and school. Many of these buildings are standing today and occupied by the small businesses who provide the community with its charm, while meeting the needs of local residents.

Todd County Creamery Association, Long Prairie Minnesota, 1900
Courtesy Minnesota Historical Society 

Commercial buildings, Long Prairie Minnesota, 1900
Courtesy Minnesota Historical Society

Todd County Historical Society

Those wishing to learn more about the history of Long Prairie should contact the Todd County Historical Society.

Todd County Historical Society
333 Central Ave
Long Prairie, MN 56347
320-732-4426
toddcountymuseum@gmail.com

History of Long Prairie 

Would you like to learn more about the history of Long Prairie? Our community has a historian - Jeff Lucas, who is a wealth of information and has even written a book on the history of the area. View his historic photos here, visit his website, watch videos or read his book Images of America:Long Prairie by Jeff Lucas.

Officer Down

Village Marshal: George Williams
Long Prairie Police Department, Minnesota

End of Watch: Saturday, July 29, 1922

Marshal Williams was shot and killed as he and a deputy attempted to arrest several bank robbery suspects in Hewitt. The men had fled after being interrupted during the robbery. Marshal Williams jumped on the running board of their car at a roadblock at the river bridge. When he ordered the driver to stop one of the backseat passengers opened fire, fatally wounding Marshal Williams. The suspects fled but were later apprehended after being located in Sauk Centre. All three suspects were found guilty and sentenced to prison ranging from seven years to life.

Marshal Williams was survived by his wife.

The Long Prairie Police Department and Todd County Sheriff’s Office will be honoring Nation Police Week which is May 13th through May 19th. This week, Law Enforcement agencies throughout the United States will be honoring all Police Officers who were killed in the line of duty.

May 15th is National Police Officer’s Day.  Nine years ago this date, a memorial was dedicated in honor of Marshal George Williams who was the Long Prairie Village Marshal who was fatally shot in the line duty.

Marshal Williams is the only Law Enforcement Officer killed in the line of duty in Todd County.  For more information please stop by at the George Williams Memorial located by Riverside Drive and Highway 71, or the Todd County Historical Museum, on Central Ave.

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Long Prairie, MN

The County Seat of Todd County, Long Prairie is a thriving community, named for the river that runs through its heart. With a regional airport, industrial park, and industrial business incubator building, Long Prairie is a hub of business activity for the county. It’s also an ethnically and culturally diverse place, with a strong Hispanic tradition and festivals that celebrate its history of more than 150 years. Long Prairie is a progressive community located in Central Minnesota with a growing population of 3,597. With a median age of 37, Long Prairie has strong workforce participation numbers and median household income is on the rise. Still, Long Prairie is an affordable place to live with the average house costing only $120,205 - making the community an attractive destination for young families and retirees.  Working in Long Prairie is incredibly convenient. Most workers have a commute of under 15-minutes! And those who need to...Learn More »

Todd County, MN

We are Here to Help You Grow. Known as the place “where the forests meet the prairie,” Todd County has a rich agricultural heritage and abundant recreational opportunities side by side. Small-town values and an easy pace of life characterize Todd County. Our agricultural and value-add industries serve as a strong backbone to a growing mix of other sectors.  Download the contact list for the 2020 Todd County Township Officers here....Learn More »