Historic Afton’s geography includes trees, plateaus, valleys, limestone mounds, coulees, glens, farmland, creeks, and a sparkling river.

Crocus Park -- Bayport MNBayport

Home to Andersen Windows, one of the most successful businesses in Washington County.

Washington County Fairgrounds 1975

Baytown Township

Home to the Washington County Fairgrounds and Lake Elmo airport.


As streetcar lines reached the White Bear Lake area, cottage developments gave St. Paul residents an opportunity to own a summer home.


Cottage Grove

Most of Cottage Grove’s early settlers came from New England. They recreated the East’s Greek Revival architecture and style of government, giving the township the nickname “New England of the West.”


The wealthiest city in Minnesota, Dellwood began as the summer home of some of St. Paul’s prominent families

Dudley Mill at Point DouglasDenmark Township

At the southeastern corner of Washington County, Denmark Township remains primarily an agricultural community.

Forest Lake - Marsh Hotel August 1890Forest Lake

First created as a railroad stop, Forest Lake became a popular summer resort destination.


Established as Greenfield Township in 1858, Grant has retained its rural character.


Grey Cloud Island Township

Grey Cloud Island’s settlement extends back thousands of years.

Hugo, MN ca. 1911Hugo

Originally Oneka Township, this French settlement grew into a village with the arrival of the railroad, and later Highway 61.


Lake Elmo

Still known for its rural character, Lake Elmo was also one of Minnesota’s first resort destinations.

Lakeland - packing shed for Northwest Nursery & Stokely Bros CanningLakeland

First built around the site of a ferry to Hudson, Lakeland later became a successful milling town.

Lakeland Shores

Quiet and residential, Lakeland Shores split off from Lakeland in 1949.


Lake St. Croix Beach

One of the last Washington County river communities to develop, early automobiles brought summer residents in search of recreation.


A mobile home park with about 700 people on fewer than 50 acres, Landfall is the county’s smallest community.

Mahtomedi Chandlers store ca. 1920sMahtomedi

Mahtomedi’s rich history includes Chautauquas, Depression-era gangsters, and Wildwood Amusement Park, on the east shore of White Bear Lake.

Marine Ferry ca. 1947Marine on St. Croix

Site of the first sawmill in what is now Minnesota, Marine on St. Croix looks today very much like it did in the 19th century.


May Township

Created in 1893 from the southern half of Marine, the township is named after prosperous farmer and early resident Morgan May.



Newport began as two separate settlements, one of which, then called Red Rock, was settled shortly after the land was purchased by the U.S. government in 1837.


One of Washington County’s original townships, Oakdale is now a fast-growing suburb.

Oak Park - Turnbills MillOak Park Heights

First formed as a lumber town, Oak Park Heights’ 20th century history is tied to the highways—built and proposed—that pass through it.

Pine Springs

Formed in 1959, Pine Springs is a small, entirely residential community of about 140 homes bordering Long Lake on the county’s western border.

Scandia Painters pg 95Scandia

Scandia is best known as the home of the first Swedish settlers in Minnesota—a settlement that dates from 1850.

Stillwater Main Street looking North 1885Stillwater

The county seat and center of the 19th-century lumber industry.

OldStoneBridgeStillwater Township

One of the first townships in Washington County, Stillwater Township was formed in 1858.

St. Mary’s Point

After its sawmill burned down, St. Mary’s Point turned into a near ghost town. But in the early 20th century, it found a new life as a summer home for residents of St. Paul.


St. Paul Park

Created from empty fields in less than two years, St. Paul Park could boast several factories in the late 1880s, before the panic of 1893 put an end to many ambitions.

West Lakeland Township

When Lakeland incorporated as a village in 1951, West Lakeland Township was split off and organized.

Willernie, Mn 1959_main


Created in 1914 as a summer village adjacent to Wildwood Amusement Park, slightly more than 1,000 people live in Willernie today.

Woodbury Heights aerial photoWoodbury

In just a few decades, Woodbury has turned from a rural farming community to one of the Twin Cities’ major suburbs.