The town site was purchased from Ray Parker. It consisted of a parcel 24.15 acres, of which 4.15 acres were used for the depot area. The rest of the purchase was 20 acres located to the north of the tracks.
The original plat shows a diagonal east-west street named Railway Street and another east-west street to the north of it called Main Street. The north-south streets were named Adam, Park, Brite, Alfred and Kepler. In 1883 the Western Town Lot Company laid out the town and named it STANHOPE.
On November 15, 1897 there was an election held "for the purpose of deciding whether the following described territory shall be incorporated." the yes votes won and on December 14, 1897, Stanhope became an incorporated city. The first council met three days later in the bank office when the city officials were sworn in.
They were: Hans Fardal, mayor; Dr. H.C. Hawley, clerk; J.W. McFarland, marshall; J.E. Sogard, treasurer; Frank Jackson, street commissioner; and Peter Hove, assessor. The councilmen were G.E. Hamaker, Iver Johnson, A.F. Swanson, L.J. Stark, William Taylor and John Williams.
Clear Lake Township
Called Goose Lake by the Indians, our early settlers called it Clear Lake. Later our township would be named for this lake. Eventually the lake became filled with reeds and seldom visited by anyone except trappers. In 1907, landowner Jonas Lundquist began the task of draining the lake to provide for more farm land. Actual dredging operation, which consisted of a large dredge bucket loaded by hand, then pulled upward and outward by a horse, and dumped on the ditch bank.
Clear Lake was a very popular resort area for pleasure seekers, with fishing and boating being a favorite pastime.
The following year the first crop was harvested from the lake bed.