Tivoli Gardens in New Ulm

In 1872, Joseph Schmucker took over operation of Friton Brewery, which was the first brewery to operate in New Ulm starting in the 1850s. Operating under a new business name, Schmucker Brewery, Schmucker built Tivoli Gardens in 1885. Located adjacent to the brewery, Tivoli Gardens operated as a bar that served products from the brewery with a dance hall on the second floor. Tivoli was described as one of the strongest and most handsome brick structures in the city.

Outside of the brewery business, Schmucker was also a three-term chairman of the New Ulm City Council Park Committee. He pushed for the beautification of the area around his brewery and bar on First North Street, including nearby German Park. He was an avid horticulturist and established beautiful Biergarten filled with flowers at the Tivoli where guests could enjoy a beer or three.

Tivoli Gardens was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. The nomination form stated that “…the surrounding warehouse and industrial structures give the Tivoli a high visibility through contrast; its very survival in such a context is fortunate.” Its survival was short-lived, however. The Tivoli Gardens building was demolished in 1985 by its owner, Edward Nierengarten. The site is now an empty lot.

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Huson’s Sandwich Shop

Huson’s Sandwich Shop, pictured here in 1935, was a popular eatery on Pokegama Avenue in Grand Rapids for several decades. Huson’s was located between Second and Third Avenues. The shop was owned by Leo Buckley from the 1920s until 1942 when the shop closed. In December 1943, George Lemler and his wife reopened Huson’s for several more years. It’s unclear when the shop closed for the last time, or when the building was demolished. The Wells Fargo drive-up is now located on the former site of Huson’s.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society (MI8.9 GR3.1 r10)

Joe Budde’s Restaurant

Staff and customers inside Joe Budde’s Restaurant and Bakery in the 1940s. The restaurant and bakery was a staple in Slayton for many years. It was sandwiched between a shoe store and a popular barber shop on Main Street. After doing business for several years, Joe Budde’s added on to their building and recreated the space as a restaurant and pool hall.

Photo courtesy of Murray County Historical Society.

Bill Krisatis’ Popcorn Wagon

Bill Krisatis’ popcorn wagon was a popular staple in St. Peter during the 1930s and 1940s. His wagon offered many popular treats for adults and children alike. Buttered popcorn, caramel corn, roasted peanuts, candy, and cigarettes could be purchased at the wagon six days a week. In this photo, Bill Krisatis is taking delivery of his first $1,000.00 order of corn for popping.

Photo courtesy of the Nicollet County Historical Society.

The Nankin Cafe

The Nankin Cafe was a downtown Minneapolis landmark for over 80 years. Founder Walter James opened the Chinese restaurant at 14 South Seventh Street in 1919. The restaurant’s popularity soared — customers would come from all over the upper midwest to eat at the Nankin. In the 1950s, the Nankin moved into a larger space across the street and then relocated to City Center in the 1980s. The 1990s were troublesome for the restaurant — a labor strike and a drug raid where 19 customers and staff were arrested damaged the Nankin’s reputation. Customers that once flocked to the best Chinese restaurant in the midwest began avoiding the Nankin. The restaurant was forced to close in 1999.

This postcard shows what the first and second level dining rooms looked like in the mid-1920s.

Rathskeller Over the Rhine

German immigrant Thomas Erdel opened the Rathskeller Over the Rhine (great name!) in the late 1800s. Pictured here in 1905, the saloon stood on the corner of Second Avenue N and First Street in Moorhead. Catering to a well-heeled clientele, the saloon served European beer, and a German band played on the verandah each night in the summer. The saloon was forced to close shortly after Prohibition.

Photo courtesy of the Historical and Cultural Society of Clay County.