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Township 4 north, range 15 east, was at first one-quarter of the town of Elkhorn. It was detached August 13. 1840. and named from the lake and
creek, which the more learned Algonquins called by various names, the most euphonious of which was Wau-be-gan-naw-po-cat——equivalent to whitish or
muddy water. To these few syllables they added "bess" for the lake and "se-pee" for the creek. For several years the more precise of old settlers
persisted in writing the simpler name with two capitals, as was often done with the name of Elkhorn. The town has Cold Spring, Jefferson county,
next northward and Lima, Rock county, next westward.