When the town was first laid off it was Linnville. On the 5th of November, 1839, the County Court ordered "that the county seat for Linn county be called Linnville"; and on the 30th, twenty five days later, it was ordered "that Linnville by the permanent seat of justice of the county of Linn."
The name was changed at the instance of Dr. Lewis F. Linn himself. On the 4th of February, the same court ordered that the permanent seat of justice for Linn county be called Linneus, instead of Linnville. Judge James A. Clark wrote to Dr. Linn that the county seat had been named, as had the county, in his honor, and asked his approval. The doctor replied that he did not wish to dictate to the court in a matter of that character, but that he preferred the name "Linneus" to "Linnville", and when the Judge laid this letter before the court that body immediately made the change referred to.