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Situated in the Kabetogama State Forest in Saint Louis County, northeastern Minnesota, the small city of Orr was named for its first postmaster, William Orr. US Highway 53 runs north-south through the community, serving as the chief route to Orr. The city is on the eastern bank of Pelican Lake, south of Cusson and north of Glendale. Moose Lake is northeast of Orr. International Falls is just over fifty miles north-northwest, and Virginia is about forty-five miles south of Orr. Although frequented by indigenous people for many years, it appears that the area was largely unsettled until the French fur traders came in the 1700s, and still it was sparsely populated. In the late 1800s, the timber industry brought lumberjacks and their families, including William Orr, who built a hotel, a general store, and other buildings around which the town would be formed. Founded in 1905, Orr continues to be the largest town in the area, with few municipal neighbors, although its peak population was 361 in 1960. Given its situation along the lake, and within a state park, tourism and outdoor recreation is the driving force behind its economy, with several resorts in and around the small town of Orr.


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