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Location of Adrian, Minnesota
Location of Adrian, Minnesota
Country United States
State Minnesota
County Nobles
 • Type Mayor - Council
 • Total 1.17 sq mi (3.03 km2)
 • Land 1.17 sq mi (3.03 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
1,562 ft (476 m)
 • Total 1,209
 • Estimate 
 • Density 1,041.92/sq mi (402.40/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 507
FIPS code 27-00262
GNIS feature ID 0639217

Adrian is a city in Nobles County, Minnesota, United States. The population was 1,209 at the 2010 census.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.11 square miles (2.87 km2), all of it land.

Main highways include:


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 193
1890 671 247.7%
1900 1,258 87.5%
1910 1,112 −11.6%
1920 1,087 −2.2%
1930 1,000 −8.0%
1940 1,066 6.6%
1950 1,115 4.6%
1960 1,215 9.0%
1970 1,350 11.1%
1980 1,336 −1.0%
1990 1,141 −14.6%
2000 1,234 8.2%
2010 1,209 −2.0%
2019 (est.) 1,218 0.7%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 1,209 people, 491 households, and 333 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,089.2 inhabitants per square mile (420.5/km2). There were 537 housing units at an average density of 483.8 per square mile (186.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.3% White, 0.4% African American, 1.2% Asian, 1.1% from other races, and 2.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.1% of the population.

There were 491 households, of which 29.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.4% were married couples living together, 7.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 32.2% were non-families. 28.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.94.

The median age in the city was 42.6 years. 25.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 21.7% were from 25 to 44; 28.2% were from 45 to 64; and 18.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.0% male and 51.0% female.


Adrian owes its birth to the St. Paul and Dakota Railroad Company, a branch of the Sioux City and St. Paul Railroad. Railroad employee O.D. Brown surveyed a 16-block town site in May 1876 and track-laying crews arrived in August of that same year. A city plat was dedicated on August 28 and filed on October 4.

Sargent Mrs Adrian Iselin
Portrait of Mrs. Adrian Iselin, by John Singer Sargent

Railroad company history states that the city was named after Adrian C. Islen, a large stockholder in the Sioux City and St. Paul Railroad. However, the City of Adrian's account of its history states that the city was named after Mrs. Adrian Iselin (Eleanora O'Donnell Iselin), mother of Adrian C. Iselin. A portrait of Mrs. Iselin hangs in the city hall.

Adrian's early development was largely fostered by the efforts of John Ireland, bishop of the St. Paul Roman Catholic Diocese. Through the Catholic press, he encouraged Catholics from eastern cities to come to Minnesota, and he used his personal wealth to buy land near Adrian to sell to the new arrivals. In 1877, he bought 20,000 acres (81 km2) of land; seven months later he made an additional purchase of 35,000 acres (140 km2). St. Adrian's parish church was founded in 1877.

In 1877, 100,000 bushels of grain were shipped from the Adrian station, and the town population totaled 193 people as of 1880. By 1882 the local parish reported 250 Catholic families living in the area. The town population increased to 671 in 1890 and 1,258 in 1900. Growth slowed thereafter, as some of Adrian's rail trade had shifted to the towns of Ellsworth, Lismore and Wilmont. In 1893, Adrian tried but failed to split Nobles County into two parts in order to become a county seat.

The first St. Adrian Catholic Church burned to the ground Christmas Eve, 1899. The young town responded by completing the present edifice in 1901. The current St. Adrian Church is on the National Register of Historic Places along with the Hotel Slade.

At 2:00 p.m., November 4, 1967, the section of Interstate Highway 90 passing Adrian officially opened to traffic. The previously used highway, U.S. Highway 16, passed directly through town. The by-passing of all east/west traffic forever sealed the character of Adrian as a small town

Notable people

  • Cedric Adams – 1930s–1950s-era WCCO AM radio personality, TV broadcaster and daily newspaper columnist in the Twin Cities. Upper Midwest pilots saw lights flicker out at the end of his 10 p.m. radio news broadcasts. "The Great Mellow Voice of the Midwest" is a 2002 inductee of the Pavek Museum of Broadcasting Hall of Fame.
  • Lloyd Voss – 1964 Green Bay Packers' first-round draft pick, member of a Vince Lombardi-coached Packers Super Bowl winner. Pittsburgh Steelers six-year defensive end starter. Missed only three games in nine NFL seasons. Enshrined in Nebraska Football Hall of Fame in 1966.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Adrian (Minnesota) para niños

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