River is a tributary of the Mississippi River, approximately 332 miles (534 km) long, in the U.S. state of Minnesota. It drains a watershed of nearly 17,000 square miles (44,000 km2), 14,751 square miles (38,200 km2) in Minnesota and about 2,000 sq mi (5,200 km2) in South Dakota and Iowa.It rises in southwestern Minnesota, in Big Stone Lake on the Minnesota-South Dakota border just south of the Laurentian Divide at the Traverse Gap portage.
The river valley is notable as the origin and center of the canning industry in Minnesota. In 1903 Carson Nesbit Cosgrove, an entrepreneur in Le Sueur
presided at the organizational meeting of the Minnesota Valley Canning Company (later renamed Green Giant). By 1930, the Minnesota River valley had emerged as one of the country's largest producers of sweet corn.