Old Fire Bell (2019)
Main Street before 1910 Fire
Fire Damage from December 23, 1910
Photo by Kevin Johnson
Charles Lindbergh Sign

Madison Lake History

From the time the land was patented to Rodger Wells, Jr. in 1858, the lakes have been an important factor in development of the Madison Lake area. The Native Americans who frequented the forests and hunted the shores called the land "Waukensika". Government surveyors, who came later, named some of the larger lakes of the area in honor of U.S. Presidents -Washington, Jefferson and Madison. The lakes attracted tourists to the area that was surrounded by rich farmland, lakes and forests. Resorts such as Copananing Hotel, Lake House Hotel, and Point Pleasant Resort and beaches existed before and during the development of Madison Lake. Noted author, Maud Hart Lovelace, who wrote the "Betsy Tacy" series of books referred to Lake Madison as Murmuring Lake in her books. Charles Lindbergh guided his World War I surplus "Jenny" on a stubbly wheat field at the northwest side of Madison Lake in 1923. While there, he offered $5 rides to offset expenses of his "barnstorming". President Taft made a whistle stop on October 24 at the Madison Lake Depot during his 1911 Presidential campaign. 

Lewis and Margaret Fitcher filed their plat of Madison Lake town site on January 17, 1885. On January 5, 1892, the Madison Lake town site was incorporated including the earlier platted Point Pleasant town site and became known as the Village of Madison Lake. Madison Lake remained a "village" until the 1980's when the State of Minnesota classified it as a city of the fourth class. 

The fire bell located in front of the City Hall was originally mounted on top of the old fire station. The bell tolled the night of December 23, 1910 and all 22 firemen responded, unfortunately most of the business district was destroyed. 
Lake Madison is the largest lake in Blue Earth County covering 1,113 acres.