There are eighty-seven Counties in Minnesota. On October 27, 1849 nine large Minnesota Counties were
created. Among them were Benton, Dahkotah, Itasca, Ramsey, Mahkahta, Pembina, Wabashaw, Washington, and Wahnata.
Of those Benton, Dakota, Itasca, Ramsey, Wabasha, and Washington still exist as their original name. With the
creation of Kittson County on March 9, 1878, Pembina County no longer existed. When Minnesota was organized as a
state, 57 of the present 87 Counties were established. The last county to be created was Lake of the Woods
County in 1923
Get Your Degree!
Find schools and get information on the program that’s right for you.
The current state of Minnesota along with Wisconsin, Illinois, and several other states was originally known as the
Northwest Territory, often referred to today as the Old Northwest Territory in historical circles. Nicollet County was created in 1853 from
previously unorganized territory and was named in honor of the noted French explorer, Joseph N. Nicollet.
In 1880 construction was started on the County Courthouse and it was completed in 1881. Over the years the courthouse has been subject to
many renovations of the original structure. The original style was mixed Romanesque and Queen Anne styles of architecture and was designed by
noted St. Paul architects of the day; Bassford and Stebbins.
Geography: Land and Water
As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 467 square miles (1,210 km2), of which 448 square miles (1,160 km2) is
land and 18 square miles (47 km2) (3.9%) is water.