About This Place
White Bear Lake is a city in Ramsey and Washington counties in the U.S. state of Minnesota. The population was 23,797 at the 2010 census. The city is located on White Bear Lake, one of the largest lakes in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area.
The city is named after its largest lake, White Bear Lake; the lake's name allegedly comes from Native Americans who previously inhabited the region. Anglo-European writers have delivered more than one version of the legends surrounding the origin of the name. From the book "Indian Legends of Minnesota" by Mrs. Carl T. Thayer, J.R. Osgood & Co., 1883, pp 583–593, "It is said that a Sioux maiden fell in love with a Chippewa brave. She, the daughter of the Chief, on learning that her father planned war against the Chippewa, ran to her lover and warned him. The brave went alone into the Sioux village to ask for peace and the hand of the maiden. Before the Chief would agree, the Chippewa would have to do a brave deed.
The lovers usually met on Manitou Island. One day, as the brave approached the Island, anticipating a meeting with his beloved, he saw, to his horror, a great white bear attacking her. He dashed to her rescue. Freed, she ran to get help from her father and the other Sioux. Returning, they saw the brave sink his knife into the bear. But too late, they both fell to the ground dead. Slowly, as they watched, the spirits of the brave and the bear rose from their prone bodies. It is said that even today, as night falls, the spirits of the bear and the brave wander the Island eternally in search of each other."