Post by ● Jun 6, 2016

City of Farmington: A Brief History

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The first settlers of what would become Farmington arrived in the 1850’s, to the area that was originally called Empire Township. In the 1850’s, the village of Dakota City was established around the intersections of the Minnesota Central, Hastings, and Dakota railroads, and the Vermillion River. Dakota City’s railroad station was the Farmington Station and nonresidents soon confused the two names and identified the village as Farmington.

In 1856, James C. Dow, editor of the Dakota Weekly Journal, wrote about Farmington, “Farmington is situated on the Vermillion River, about fifteen miles from Hastings. This place is rightly named for it looks like a village of farms.” The village received its charter in 1872 making it the second oldest community in the Dakota County after the county seat, Hastings.

One of the most notable events of the city’s history is the movement of the Dakota County Fair to Farmington in 1869. Another important but devastating event was the Great Fire of Farmington on November 22nd, 1879. The fire destroyed several houses, stores, a hotel, and a grain elevator in the downtown area. The Farmington High School graduated its first class in the year 1884. The community of Farmington was also one of the first to offer rural free mail delivery 1897.

The city of Farmington is home to three properties that are listed on the Register of Historic Places for Dakota County, including the Exchange Bank Building. The Exchange Bank was built in 1880 as the most prominent commercial building in Farmington. Another building on the register in the Church of the Advent that was built in 1872, which is a historic Carpenter Gothic Episcopal church

The town continued to into the 20th century and in 1972, Farmington celebrated its centennial. Recently, the city has expanded to include several suburban neighborhoods to the north of the original downtown area. Farmington is still separated to the north by Lakeville and the west by farms. However, Farmington’s community continues to be incorporated into the surrounding suburbs of the metro area.

If you have any questions regarding the city of Farmington, Minnesota, or if you would like to sell or buy a house in the area, please feel free to visit or call 1-800-909-1953.