The first successful open-heart surgery was performed in 1952 at the University of Minnesota by Dr. C. Walton Lillehei.
Murray County, located in the southwestern corner of Minnesota, has a rich history dating back centuries. The region was originally inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Dakota Sioux. European settlers began arriving in the late 1800s, attracted by the fertile farmland and opportunities for trade.

In 1857, Murray County was officially established and named after territorial legislator William H. Murray. The county seat was initially located in Currie, which was a small trading post at the time. As the population grew, the county government was eventually moved to Slayton in 1890.

Agriculture played a significant role in the county's development. Immigrants from Germany, Scandinavia, and other European countries brought their farming skills and helped cultivate the land. The fertile soil allowed for prosperous farms, with wheat being a primary crop. Over time, dairy farming and hog production also became important to the local economy.

Murray County was not without its challenges, however. The harsh winters and limited access to transportation posed difficulties for early settlers. The arrival of the railroad in the late 1800s helped connect the county to the wider region, facilitating the transportation of goods and people.

Today, Murray County remains an agricultural hub, known for its production of corn, soybeans, and livestock. The county is also home to several lakes and recreational areas, attracting visitors for boating, fishing, and camping. Despite the changes over the years, Murray County has maintained its rural charm while adapting to the needs of its residents and visitors.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Murray County, Minnesota.

  • 1857: Murray County was established by the Minnesota Territorial Legislature.
  • 1870: The first permanent settlement, with the town of Fenton becoming the first county seat.
  • 1872: The county seat was moved to Currie.
  • 1880: The Chicago and North Western Railway was completed, boosting the county's population and economy.
  • 1890: The county seat was moved again, this time to Slayton.
  • 1939-1940: The Murray County Courthouse, in Slayton, was constructed.
  • 1962: The county's population reached its peak at over 10,000 residents.
  • 1998: Murray County celebrated its 140-year anniversary.
  • 2000: The county's population decreased to just over 8,700 residents.
  • 2020: Murray County continues to thrive as a rural community in southwestern Minnesota.