Schools in north-central Minnesota (1871-1909). Perham marks the beginning of the Lake Park region of Minnesota. In 1873 the town was platted by the LakeSuperior and Puget Sound Land Company and named after Josiah Perham, the first president of the Northern Pacific Railroad. The early businesses were the Glove Milling company and the Schmidt Wagon Works. Within ten years the Catholic community developed a school system, at one time having the three following Catholic schools in the area: 1.) St. Henry's - the Benedictine sisters opened a school in a section of the convent but when the enrollment increased, the former public school and a harness shop were utilized; enrollment there reached a peak of 269 pupils with 5-6 sisters teaching in subsequent years. 2.) St. Joseph - the Benedictine sisters began teaching in a district school (Ottertail County), three miles from Perham. (In 1885 St. Benedict's Convent built a large dwelling there intended to serve as a sisters' health resort; instead, it became the residence for the 5 sisters at St. Joseph's School. The dwelling was later sold for $1,100.) 3.) St. Stanislaus - in 1902, the Benedictine sisters from St. Joseph's also staffed this small school but three years later it closed because only 38 students enrolled. However, the pastor reopened it seven years later and the Polish-speaking Felician sisters staffed it for another twenty years (Saint Benedict's Monastery Archives).