Benton County was established in 1849 and was named in honor of Sen. Thomas Hart Benton of St. Louis, Missouri, a strong advocate of free land laws. The county seat is in Foley, Minnesota.
Meeker County, which was originally part of both Wright and Stearns counties, was established in 1856. The county seat is in Litchfield, Minnesota.
Todd County, which was originally part of Stearns County, was established in 1855 and named for John Blair Smith Todd. The county seat is in Long Prairie, Minnesota.