Byron is a city in Olmsted County, Minnesota, United States, approximately 8 miles west of Rochester on U.S. Route 14. It is surrounded by Kalmar Township. The population was 3,500 at the 2000 census. Local industries are in the form of farm services and printing. A grain elevator is situated next to the rail line that runs through town, which is owned by the Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad. Schmidt Printing is another major company in town and is part of Taylor Corporation, founded by Glen Taylor. The city received its name at the suggestion of George W. Van Dusen, who desired the name to be derived from his home town of Port Byron, New York. Van Dusen grew his fortune with his investments in grain elevators along railroad lines, and later built the large Van Dusen Mansion in Minneapolis. The Byron area had apparently been known as Bear Grove before being renamed, supposedly because there were one or more bears living in the vicinity early on. The school mascot for Byron is a bear, in recognition of that story.