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Although not the county seat, the city of Renville is in Renville County, Minnesota. The chief routes through the city are US Route 212 and County Highway 6. Along Route 212, Renville is east of Sacred Heart and west of Danube. Granite Falls is about sixteen miles to the west. Both the city and county were named for Joseph Renville, who had served as a guide to the area, and is credited for having founded Fort Renville, which included living quarters for Renville and his family, along with housing for people known as his soldiers. The enclosed area included space for sheep, a herd of cattle, and several horses. Later, Fort Renville hosted the Lac qui Parle Sioux Mission, where several portions of the Bible were translated from French into the Sioux language, much of the work done by Renville himself. Part Dakotan and part French, Renville was very familiar with the wilderness in the area prior to its settlement by European-Americans. A regional pioneer, Renville was a courier, interpreter, and founder of the Columbia Fur Company, and also served as a captain during the War of 1812. Renville was platted when the railroad reached the area in 1878, and incorporated in 1906. Its population of just over a thousand has remained fairly stable since 1900. Situated near the Minnesota River Valley, in an area known for high agricultural productivity, the city’s economy is largely based on agriculture and agribusiness, serving as a service and distribution center for the surrounding region. The world’s largest sugar beet processing plant is in Renville.

 

 

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