1871: Rock County was one township
The following appeared in an 1886 atlas:
ORGANIZATION OF TOWNSHIPS
Until the 15th of February, 1871, the whole county was in reality one township, although they had not elected any township officers, except a justice of the peace. At a meeting of the board of county commissioners, however, held on that day, there was one township created and a few days later a second was set off, and authority given for organization. Philo Hawes presented to the board a petition for the organization of Luverne Township which was granted. At that time the township embraced, in addition to its present boundaries, the west half of Magnolia, and all of Mound. On the 18th day of February, 1871, a petition was presented which was granted, organizing the township of Grant, which included the present towns of Clinton and Kanaranzi.
The petition which requested the organization of Luverne Township, was dated February 15, 1871, and signed by the following named: E. N. Darling, Ed. McKenzie, P. J. Kniss, William Blaisdell, G. W. Daniels, Horace Plum, L. A. Daniels, Philo Hawes, William Greer, John Jones, H. Sawyer, J. C. Phelps, G. Webber, S. Wilcox, S. D. Gregory, and C. C. Jones.
The petition for the organization of Grant Township bore the date of October 11, 1871, and was signed by L. B. McCollum, F. S. Mason, John McCollum, John H. Ferguson, M. C. Smith, W. F. Brown, J. H. Loomis, O. P. Steen, Thomas Hadvedt, D. MacNabb, Ben. Evens, Erick Evens, C. C. Berge, and A. E. Estey.
On the 27th of May, 1871, a petition was presented and granted, asking that the boundaries of the township of Luverne be changed so as to embrace all of the county north of the present townships of Kanaranzi, Clinton, and Martin. This petition was signed by J. F. Shoemaker, P. J. Kniss, E. S. Gregory, G. W. Daniels, P. F. Kelley, L. A. Daniels, L. McDermott, James Kelley, Horace Plum, P. Hawes, John Ryan, Ed McKenzie, J. C. Gregory and Stephen Wilcox.
There is no record of the organization of the township of Clinton, but it must have been accomplished, and the name changed from Grant to Clinton during the summer of 1871, for, on the 11th of October of that year a petition was presented, asking that the “boundaries of the town of Clinton to be changed.” The petition was granted, and Clinton Township was made to include Kanaranzi, Clinton, and Martin.
This article will continue next week with the rest of the townships.
Donations to the Rock County Historical Society can be sent to the Rock County Historical Society, P.O. Box 741, Luverne, MN 56156.
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