City of Karlstad's History


Around 1883, a Swede named Carl August Carlson moved into the country west of the Twin Lakes and established a homestead. In 1904, the Soo Line Rail Road built it's track trough Carl Carlson' farm and bought a townsite from him. The new town was in need of a name. Many suggested Klingville, then Clayton, and finally the decision was made to call the town Karlstad - honoring both Mr. Carlson and the city of Karlstad in Sweden. Business owners that were a part of the birth of the town were: Raier Olson's blacksmith shop; Nordin's Hotel, managed by the Wicklund Bros.; Ole Harstad's livery barn; Peter Lofgren's general store; Turnwall Mercantile; Te Commercial Hotel, owned by Jonas Anderson; L.E. Anderson livery barn; a lumber mill; flour mill; and an elevator.  The Knute Hodne store building was moved in from Fir, about three miles southwest of Karlstad.  The first business actually built in Karlstad was the Pearson Hotel. Since its birth in 1904, Karlstad has grown into a thriving town which is home to numerous business, industries, and facilities.