The Sioux people ceded most of southern Minnesota in the Treaty of Traverse Des Sioux in 1851. A military road was constructed between Fort Snelling and the southern forts. In 1855, J.J. Brackett, a Saint Paul lumber baron and mail carrier using the road, decided to plat a site halfway between Saint Paul and Saint Peter on a lake he named Prairie Lake. The village was established as Lakeville Township in 1858. Notoriety came when Colonel Marion Savage expanded his entertainment business into constructing Antlers Amusement Park in 1910. Riding on fame from his success with the Dan Patch racing horse and the popularity of the park, the lake was renamed Lake Marion, and the rail line servicing the park named the Dan Patch Railroad Line.
With the mostly rural landscape, early settlers were farmers and this owed to a high percentage of Scandinavians. The other group included Irish, Scots, and English who had spread out from Hamilton Landing and Burnsville. In Karen Miller’s diary from 1840 to 1895, Danes reportedly outnumbered Norwegians and travel to Minneapolis was not uncommon for the rural township. Enggren’s Grocery was a downtown staple since 1900 until it closed in 2006.
The later 20th century followed typically for the outer-ring suburban Twin Cities with official incorporation as the City of Lakeville in 1967. The agriculture industry continued to sustain itself as postwar development did not immediately absorb Lakeville (as well as Interstate 35’s later completion date). In the early 21st century, housing and population increases were due to rising land costs in the metropolitan area, causing Lakeville to become a boomtown.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 37.83 square miles (97.98 km2), of which 36.06 square miles (93.39 km2) is land and 1.77 square miles (4.58 km2) is water. Lakeville includes the Argonne Farms post-World War I settlement project which failed in the early 20th century and was redeveloped in the 21st century into typical suburban retail. Since it was a semi-autonomous village within Lakeville Township before the city’s incorporation, it continues to appear today on maps as Argonne.
A branch of the Vermillion River flows through Lakeville. Its headwaters are just west of the city limits in Credit River Township, and it flows eastward across Dakota County until it empties into the Mississippi River at the Wisconsin border. Much of Lakeville drains into the Vermillion River watershed. North Creek, a major tributary of the Vermillion, begins its flow in northern Lakeville and flows eastward to meet the Vermillion near downtown Farmington just east of Lakeville. The Vermillion River has been designated as a trout stream by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
As its name implies, Lakeville contains several lakes as well as smaller ponds and wetlands within its borders. The two largest lakes are Lake Marion and Orchard Lake, which are used heavily for recreation such as fishing, boating, and swimming. Smaller named natural lakes include Kingsley Lake and Lee Lake. Valley Lake is a small man-made lake in the northern part of the city.
Shops on Lakeville’s “Main Street”
Airlake Industrial Park, developed by Maynard Johnson with colleagues at Bloomington-based Hitchcock Industries, is home to as many as 200 companies and an estimated 4,500 employees. The 1,500-acre park, one of the state’s largest contiguous industrial parks, has attracted companies ranging from start-ups to large corporations.
Airlake Industrial Park was a contrived name – “air” represented the airport that Hitchcock Industries built on the grounds and “lake” signified nearby Lake Marion.
Lakeville is served by the Airlake Airport, which has a single runway with an ILS approach. The airport is managed by the Metropolitan Airports Commission as a reliever facility to draw general aviation traffic. The FAA operates the Minneapolis ARTCC (air route traffic control center) in Farmington, several miles away from the airport. This center provides traffic control services for Minnesota and surrounding states.
Large farms are still in operation, producing most of their revenue in corn, soybeans, and dairy cattle.
Post Consumer Brands has had its headquarters in Lakeville since 2015.
The city is served by three different school districts, whose boundaries were determined while the community was largely agricultural. Today Independent School District 196 (“Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan”) and Farmington School District 192 serve parts of northern and eastern Lakeville. Most Lakeville households are served by Lakeville Area School District 194. In the fall of 2005, the Lakeville School District opened its second high school, Lakeville South. Some students attend public schools in other school districts chosen by their families under Minnesota’s open enrollment statute. Lakeville North was a Blue Ribbon school of excellence in 2009. Each high school has nearly 2,000 students. There are eight public elementary schools and three public middle schools. Century Middle School students go on to Lakeville North, McGuire Middle School students to Lakeville South, and Kenwood Middle School students to either, depending on their neighborhood of residence.
Lakeville has many recreational opportunities. The Parks & Recreation Department maintains a total of 62 public properties, including neighborhood and community parks, athletic fields, playgrounds, greenways, trails, tennis courts, skating rinks, picnic areas, conservation areas, nature areas, several public fishing areas, swimming beaches, the City’s Central Maintenance Facility, Senior Center, and the Lakeville Area Arts Center. Notable parks include Ritter Farm Park, North Park, Antlers Park, King Park, Valley Lake Park, and Aronson Park, which features a Veterans Memorial.
Antlers Park features a large swimming beach with volleyball courts, baseball diamonds, a playground area, water equipment, a picnic area, a fishing pier, and horseshoe pits. Orchard Lake Beach has a picnic area, shore fishing, playground equipment, and volleyball courts. Valley Lake Beach includes playground equipment, a picnic area, a walking trail around the lake, a fishing pier and seasonal restrooms.
Elisabeth Bachman, Olympic volleyball player
Todd Bachman, CEO of Bachman’s, killed at the Beijing Olympics in 2008
Rachel Banham, University of Minnesota basketball player and WNBA player for the Connecticut Sun
Bradley Ellingboe, composer
Kevin Kaesviharn, pro football player
John Kline, U.S. Representative
Paul Krause, Pro Football Hall of Famer, played for Minnesota Vikings
Matt Little, former Lakeville Mayor, Minnesota Senate District 58
J.P. Macura, Charlotte Hornets basketball player
Joey Miller, NASCAR driver
Janelle Pierzina, Big Brother contestant
Ryan Poehling, St. Cloud State hockey player drafted by the Montreal Canadiens
Jordan Schroeder, National Hockey League (NHL) centerman for Columbus Blue Jackets
Brady Skjei, University of Minnesota hockey player drafted by the New York Rangers
Steve Strachan, former member of the Minnesota House of Representatives and former chief of the Lakeville Police Departmen
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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