East Bethel started out as the township of Bethel and remained rural until the 1950’s.  The first settlers were Quakers who settled in the northern part of town.  Rice Price and O. Evans discovered the area in the fall of 1855 and returned with their families in the spring.  In 1867, a settlement was made in the eastern part of town which came to be known as East Bethel.  The town was organized with the county in 1857. First officers were: Supervisor: O. Evans, Clerks; W. Dickens and R. Price, Treas; J. Mayhers, and Assessors John Wyatt and F. Wyatt.

School District #3 was organized in 1857 and on section 28 a log schoolhouse was built.  District #22 was organized in 1870 and the schoolhouse built in 1872 and moved in 1875.  District #25 was organized in 1871, and the schoolhouse was built in 1874.  District #37 was organized in 1875 and District #40 in 1880.

In the spring of 1957 a committee was formed to take steps to incorporate and on May 8th a petition was presented to the Anoka County Commissioners.

On June 4, 1957 an election was held and the incorporation of  East Bethel was approved.  The first mayor was E. Anderson, trustees were Ralph Gardner, Ed Heckenlaible, and Walter Caley, Treas; Pauline Ekvall, Clerk; Mrs. Isobel Rasmussen, Assessor; Evelyn Bonde, Justices; Goe Shaffer and Rodman Philbrook and Constables; Howard R. Whaly and William Shaw.

In 1959 East Bethel Village bought its first fire engine and began its volunteer Fire Department.  Galen was named chief.

Further Resources

Coon Lake

Manuscript Files:
All Around the County Collection – East Bethel Box

Newspaper on Microfilm:
East Bethel Booster, Sept. 26, 1957-Dec. 13, 1963

City of East Bethel website