Appleton is a city in Swift County, Minnesota, United States. The population was 2,871 at the 2000 census. The town is home to a medium-security prison, the Prairie Correctional Facility, which is wholly owned and operated by Corrections Corporation of America. Elmer A. Benson, who served as a United States Senator and as Governor of Minnesota, was born in Appleton on 23 Sept. 1895. Notably, Appleton is also home to many retirees and military veterans. Appleton has named all of its twenty-some streets, except Minnesota Street, for local veterans who died in combat.