Posts in Northern Minnesota
The Ten Thousand Lakes of Minnesota Association

Have you ever wondered how Minnesota became known as the land of 10,000 lakes? Every Minnesotan knows that the state boasts closer to 11,842 (give or take) lakes--significantly more than, say, Wisconsin. That number swells to 28,176 if you include ponds and wetlands, too. So where did the perfectly round number of 10,000 come from? The rise of the automobile industry brought with it a surge in tourism opportunities for middle-class

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Who the Heck Was Veda Ponikvar?

Veda Ponikvar was born in Chisholm in 1919 to Slovenian immigrants who worked in the mines that dotted the Iron Range. Ponikvar didn't learn English until she started school, but soon became a star pupil in her Chisholm school. By the time she was 11 years old, she'd made up her mind about her future--she wanted to run a newspaper. The idea likely came from watching

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A Dash of History: German Potato Salad Recipe from Grandma's in Duluth

When Grandma’s Saloon and Deli opened at the foot of the Aerial Lift Bridge, Duluth’s Canal Park area was far from an ideal location to open a new restaurant. It was a virtual wasteland of junkyards and crumbling warehouses. But owners Mick Paulucci and Andy Borg saw potential in opening their new restaurant near the lake and picked a spot just steps away

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The Duluth Homesteads Project

The Duluth Homestead Project, also known as the Jackson Project, began under the United States Resettlement Administration (USRA) in 1936. The purpose of the program was to relieve the shortage of sustainably affordable housing for families in Duluth. Qualified families in the Duluth area could receive a house on five

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The Dudley Mansion in Duluth

Most of us wouldn’t consider a 13,000 square foot mansion situated on a six-acre wooded lot with more than 400-feet of Lake Superior shoreline anything less than the very finest. But having a majestic estate like Glensheen for a neighbor is tough! When Harry and Marjorie Dudley built their home, they chose not to compete with their (very familiar) neighbors to

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Stone Ruins of Park Terrace in Duluth

Park Terrace was an opulent building of Victorian townhouses located on a steep hill just off of Mesaba Avenue in Duluth. Built in 1890 by the Myers Brothers Investment Company at the cost of $50,000. Park Terrace was one of the first multi-family buildings in West Duluth. Two of the Meyers brothers, Henry and Benjamin, lived at

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Prehistoric Minnesota Woman

As construction workers were excavating a roadway along the eastern shore of Prairie Lake near Pelican Rapids in 1931, they uncovered one of the most exciting prehistoric finds in this region of North America—a human skeleton. The remains were found nine feet below the surface and encased in fine layers of clay which had once been

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Duluth's Incline Railway

Last fall I was able to cross a few stops in Duluth’s west end off of my to-do list. I wanted to walk the path that once ran alongside the Incline Railway for several years, but it always got pushed down on my list because I haven’t spent a lot of them in this part of town. I decided to park along Skyline Parkway (between N Sixth Avenue W, and N

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Interstate Bridge in Duluth

Before the Interstate Bridge was built between Duluth and Superior in the late-1890s, the only way to get between the two cities was by ferry. Of course, ice often prevented the ferry from crossing in the winter. In 1894, the Duluth-Superior Bridge Company was incorporated with the purpose of building a bridge that connected Connors Point

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Rainy Lake Gold Rush

When people think of the gold rush, they think of California, but Minnesota had its own gold rush. With stories of people striking it rich in California spreading east, even the slightest hint of gold elsewhere in the country would spark a new frenzy. When a vein of gold-laden quartz was found amid the forests and lakes of

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Stewart Creek Stone-Arch Bridge

Travelers come upon the Stewart Creek stone-arch bridge in a bend of an unpaved section of Skyline Parkway, where the bridge reveals its mammoth, craggy, Picturesque stonework over a beautifully wooded ravine. The bridge was constructed around 1925 as part of a new section of the scenic parkway. It conveys a mood rather than a

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The Wreck of the Arthur Orr

The Arthur Orr was a 286’ steel package freighter built by the Chicago Ship Building Company. She was entered into service as a package freighter on the Great Lakes in 1893. The Arthur Orr served faithfully out of Duluth, carrying packages and small freight up and down the north and south shores of Lake Superior. After leaving Duluth with a

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Buchanan: A Town of Firsts

Rumors of copper riches hidden in the North Shore's streams and hillsides had excited the imaginations of mineral prospectors and speculators for years. Copper towns were numerous along the North Shore of Lake Superior in the mid-19th century. With few exceptions, the town sites, much like their creators' dreams, never became

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