We have all heard about the strange names of some of these towns in Minnesota.  The question is usually WHY would anyone name their town "Nimrod" or "Climax"... because of course in today's society, those are names that no one would probably want to claim to be from.

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But, doing some research, finds that there really is a pretty good  reason for these names.  Or, at the very least, gives a reason for them to be named that.  It's one of those 'OH!  I get it' situations.

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Here are some examples:

  • Climax- which is located in Polk County.  This town is super small.   Like under 500 people.  But most people have heard of it because of the name.  The name actually originated from a chewing tobacco company.
  • Ball Club- located in Itasca County.  This one is named after a Native American Lacrosse Stick.  Still a little weird.
  • Sleepy Eye- which is located in Brown County, is named after a Native American Chief.  He was Ishtakaba, also known as Chief Sleepy Eye.
  • Nowthen- located in Anoka County.  I feel like this is what a mother would say to calm a child 'now, now then'.  But actually this one is named after a postmaster who was known to say 'now then'.  Not much actual thought went into that one, huh?
  • Clontarf- located in Swift County.  I've never heard of this town.  But it's strange enough to make this list.  It's named for an Irish city of the same name.  Copy-cat!
  • Duluth- located in St. Louis County.  Since this town is so familiar, I really never thought of the name being that strange.  But the origination is interesting.  It comes after the first European to visit the area.  His name was Daniel Greysolon, Sieur DuLhut.  That's quite a bit,  obviously simplified to "Duluth";
  • Nimrod- located in Wadena County.  I've never been to this little town.  It's one of those blink and you'll miss it towns.   Less than  100 people live there.  But it's a sign that you see driving to other more familiar places.  Therefore, it becomes more familiar.  The town was named for a 'powerful man in the Bible'.  Ok...

There are a lot of strange town names, but none that I find hard to pronounce. That's a whole other issue.  When living in Wisconsin, there were so many Native American towns.  Sometimes I found it difficult to pronounce them correctly.  But I learned.