The original townsite for the Village of Wheaton was platted September 1, 1884, and it was incorporated May 25, 1887. The town was at first laid out a little west and north of the present location, but becuase of flood danger it was relocated at the existing site. Wheaton was given its name by the owners of the land, Svenning and Ole Odenborg, in honor of Daniel Thomas Wheaton. a cival engineer and county surveyor from Morris, who was in charge of making a survey for the Fargo and Southern Railroad.

In the summer of 1885 a petition to the county commissioners to allow voters to vote on the removal of the county seat from Browns Valley to Wheaton had been circulated and siigned by twq-thirds of the freeholders of the county. In the fall of 1886 the site was resolved by a majority of the taxpayers - the county seat was to be moved to Wheaton.

Wheaton's first officers were C.H. Colyer, Mayor; Thomas Kuhn, Alfred Setterlund and Nels Schroeder,Trustees; and Andrew Peterson, Recorder. These men held the first village council meeting on June 25, 1887

Wheaton Population Trend




The city of Browns Valley was founded in 1866 by Major Joseph R. Brown, who owned about 1,000 acres of land in the valley. He erected a log house which he brought from Fort Wadsworth, and he occupied and operatedit with his family as a trading post, stage line stop,tavern and inn. The log home which still stands in Browns Valley became the center of the village.

A post office was opened in the Brown cabin in 1867 with Samual J. Brown, son of the founder, as the county's first postmaster. The settlement and post office were at first called Lake Traverse Station and Browns Station, but were renamed Browns Valley after the death of Joseph Brown in 1870. The village was platted in 1868 and incoporated in 1881.

Browns Valley was designated the county seat by legislation in 1868 and it remained there, except for a brief period in Maudada, until moved to Wheaton in 1886.



Dumont, located seven miles southwest of Wheaton in Croke Township, like Wheaton began because of the railroad. In 1884 the Fargo-Southern Railroad came through the area and put up a depot. Croke Township was in the process of surveying an original plat for a village, and Dumont was platted on April 1, 1885. It is believed that the name Dumont was givin by a Frenchman who was a top hunter and provided meals to the railroad men in the area.

In 1886 Michael Zemple built the first four buildings on the village site, including a warehouse, and began buying grain. He was also the towns first postmaster.



Located in the extreme northeast part of the county in Tintah Township, Tintah is approximatley 24 miles from Wheaton. Although the railroad first came through Tintah in 1872, the town was not organized until 1881. It was platted March 1, 1887, and incorporated in March of 1889. Population was 15 in 1890.

The first white resident of the townsite was Charles Nyberg who arrived in 1874. The first business place erected was the Tintah hotel built in 1880 by J.E. Henry, a lumberman fron New Hampshire. Henry also built the first house which was located on the west side of the tracks. The first store was located in the Henry Hotel by Mr. Trumbee and Charles Smith. The latter was also Tintah's first postmaster.


Text and map by permission

Wheaton Minnesota Centennial History 1887 - 1987