The city was once known as Ashawa, but changed names at the request of the Postal Service, which was having trouble delivering mail to Oshawa, Minn.
There were 275 households out of which 27.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.9% were married couples living together, 13.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 42.5% were non-families. 39.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 24.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.11 and the average family size was 2.82.
In the city the population was spread out with 21.5% under the age of 18, 8.0% from 18 to 24, 24.1% from 25 to 44, 19.8% from 45 to 64, and 26.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 80.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 80.1 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $21,607, and the median income for a family was $34,643. Males had a median income of $30,833 versus $22,232 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,848. About 9.5% of families and 13.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.8% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.