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Hadley is a small town in Leeds Township, Murray County, Minnesota. The community was founded as Summit Lake in 1879, but when a post office was established the following year it was renamed for the cities by that name in New York, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts. Hadley was incorporated as a village in 1903. Although currently incorporated as a city, Hadley’s population has been under one hundred since 1990, and its peak population was 147 in 1920. The town was developed as a station of the Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis and Omaha Railroad, which later became the St. Paul and Sioux City Railroad. Hadley is situated on a hill overlooking Summit Lake, an eighty-acre body of water that is the tributary to Beaver Creek, and for which the town was originally named. The city’s first residents were largely Norwegian immigrants, Hans Simonson being the first to arrive in 1872. The first business in Hadley was the Clauson Well Company, founded in 1900, and remaining in operation until 1995. The Hadley Lumber Company was established in 1904. After the lumberyard was destroyed by fire in 1962, a gas station was built there, and the site is now the location of Hadley Steel. Another important business for the community was the Hadley Cooperative Creamery, which was established in 1905. Once the largest creamery in southwestern Minnesota, it went out of business in the mid-1960s, after which its building was purchased by the Hadley Sportsman Club, and is now a private home. A jail was built in 1904, but used only once, later used for village and township meetings and elections. Hadley is located along Minnesota Highway 30, east of Lake Wilson and west of Slayton. The South Dakota border is about forty miles west of Hadley.

 

 

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