Visit the Iowa GenWeb Project

Winneshiek County IAGenWeb

Origin of Name Decorah

this site was last updated on Friday, 18 September 2020

Where we got our Name
Not long ago it was asked of the REPUBLICAN what the meaning of Decorah was. Not being up in what we supposed was Indian lore we referred to Dr. Frank Powell, (White Beaver) of La Crosse, who has lately been elected chief of the Winnebago’s, because that tribe inhabited this valley in the early days. From him we learn that “Decorah is not of Indian origin, but became a family name among the Winnebago’s through the marriage of an old French trader named De Corre to the daughter of a famous chief. The name became corrupted into Decorah as time passed. The name Waukon is Sioux. It means a spirit something more than average—something not to be lightly spoken of.” From this it would appear that we are half breeds. We mention it ourselves to forestall some irreverent “cuss” who might want to throw stones at our glass house.

Source: Decorah Republican Feb. 28, 1895 P 4 C 1

Please, contact the County Coordinator to submit additions or corrections.

History * Winneshiek IAGenWeb Home

Copyright statement
Please read the IAGenWeb Terms, Conditions & Disclaimer
~all of which applies to the Winneshiek Co. website. ~
this page was last updated on Friday, 18 September 2020
Valid HTML 4.0 Transitional