The town takes its name from the beautiful lake on which the town is located.. The name Osakis is thought to mean place of the Sauk and commemorates a small group of Sauk Indians who lived near the lake in the early 19th century.
The "Sauk Valley Man" (or "Sauk Valley Skeleton") found a few miles outside Osakis is an important Archaic Period archeological find and has been dated to approximately 2300 B.C..
Gar Wood, inventor of the hydraulic-lift dump truck, boat designer, boat racer, and world water speed record holder was raised in Osakis, and it was a steamboat race on Lake Osakis that got him into racing.
Ron Weinhold's River Glen Gardens, a 75-acre arboretum he developed over the period of six decades, is well known to horticulturists throughout Minnesota.
Sam J. Brown and
In 1910, a home was purchased in Osakis by the Brown family for their mother.
The Browns owned the local mercantile in Osakis and Sam Brown began manufacturing fishing lures in the basement of the house. In 1917, he received a patent on his “Fisheretto” fishing lure. The mercantile closed during the depression and that is when Mike and Ed Brown took over the manufacturing of the fishing lures. The lures were sold to area bait shops until the mid 1940s.