Discover the Incredible History of Lake Minnetonka

July 3, 2020

Life on Minnetonka Lake brings many benefits such as weekend boat outings, fine dining in the evenings, and strolls through nearby gardens in the spring and summer. Yet, the lake hasn’t always been this vibrant. Lake Minnetonka’s history is rich, telling a story of determination even through tough times.

Lake Minnetonka’s Rich History

To truly connect with the beauty of Lake Minnetonka, let’s first go back…way back. Around 8,000 B.C., glaciers melted to form a large body of water covering around 14,500 acres. From then till around 1,500 C.E., the water provided life-sustaining nutrients and supplies to many Native American tribes who called it home. Even today, you’re able to see land features built by inhabitants of the region in areas around the lake.

Now let’s fast forward to the 1800s. Minnesota was home to the Dakota tribe who visited the lake frequently for hunting, fishing and harvesting maple syrup. Europeans soon discovered the body of water in 1822. And, in 1852, territorial governor Alexander Ramsey named the lake, Lake Minnetonka, a Dakota name meaning “big water.” The first settlement, Excelsior, was then established in 1853, where early pioneers put down their roots to take advantage of the lake’s resources, including timber.

Lake Minnetonka continued to grow through the rest of the 1800s. It was a well-loved tourist attraction, boasting famous hotels such as The Lake Park Hotel, steamboats and more. Unfortunately, as the railroad expanded across the country in the 1890s, many tourists began leaving Lake Minnetonka for seemingly greener pastures.

As the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul began to grow in the early 1900s, many workers found the lake to be the perfect place for vacation homes. As they built, Lake Minnetonka continued to grow through adversity. Even the Tornado Outbreak of 1965 couldn’t hold it back. Today, Lake Minnetonka continues to thrive.

A Brief History of The Cove on Lake Minnetonka

The Cove on Lake Minnetonka is a mile and a half of shoreline nestled in 544-acre Halsted Bay. This bay was named for Captain Frank Halstead of New Jersey who came to the lake in 1855. In the 1960s, Curt Carlson purchased this site to save it for the next generation of Carlsons. Although he had some plans for development, the site remained undeveloped until now.

The Cove offers those looking for homes for sale on Lake Minnetonka the rare and unique opportunity to build their dream home on the water.

Looking for Homes for Sale on Lake Minnetonka?

Want to live around historical Lake Minnetonka? There are many houses for sale on Lake Minnetonka, including opportunities within The Cove. To learn more about Lake Minnetonka property for sale, send us a message today.

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