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 John, Bill and Tom Brown for their mother and four younger brothers and sisters.
Mike, Ed, Anne and Kate Brown lived in the house through the 20's and 30's while operating a mercantile store in town. The store closed during the depression and that is when Mike and Ed started manufacturing fishing lures. Ed invented and patented the "Fisheretto" lures which were sold to area bait shops during the 40's and 50's.