Minnesota: Lac qui Parle County

West of Chippewa County is Lac qui Parle County (pop. 7,259). In 2011, it was rated the healthiest county in Minnesota by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, based on such factors as unemployment, child poverty, and life expectancy.

The county’s population was 15,509 in 1940. 

Lac qui Parle County is bordered by the Minnesota River on the north and South Dakota on the west.

The county seat is Madison (pop. 1,551), the “Lutefisk Capital of the U.S.A.”

Codfish boiled in lye, a Scandinavian delicacy 

The county courthouse in Madison was built in 1899.

In the Romanesque Revival style 

Robert Bly, poet and author of “Iron John: A Book About Men,” was born in Madison in 1926.

HIs parents were of Norwegian ancestry.

The town of Dawson (pop. 1,540) is known as “The Small City With the Bright Future.”

Dawson Carnegie Library (1906) 

Dawson native Phyllis Gates (1925-2006) was married to actor Rock Hudson from 1955 to 1958.

Rock and Phyllis

The 312-acre Salt Lake is Minnesota’s only alkaline wetland. With no inlet or outlet, it is generally too salty for fish – but it is a popular spot for birding.

Bird-viewing area at Salt Lake


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