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The New Ulm Company Service Station

Built in 1926, the New Ulm Company Service Station is the best remaining example in a series of whimsical stations designed by George Saffert of the Saffert Construction Company during the 1920s. Each station...

District 6 School in New Sweden

The District 6 school in New Sweden Township stands in a field surrounded by tall stalks of corn in the summer and drifts of white snow in the winter. This pretty, white clapboard building...

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...

Swenson’s General Store in Norseland

Around the turn of the twentieth century, Nicollet County had eight rural crossroads hamlets. While all of the other small towns have removed many of the structures that marked their existence, Norseland has held...

The End of the Line in Currie

In 1899, the Des Moines Valley Railway Company began work on a plan to extend their rail line in western Minnesota an additional 38.63 miles northwest from Bingham Lake to Currie. That year, nearly...

Oxford Mill Ruin

The Oxford Mill was located on the bank of the Little Cannon River near Cannon Falls. When the mill was built by C.N. Wilcox and John and Edward Archibald in 1878, it was part...

Presidential Candidate Herbert Hoover

Presidential candidate Herbert Hoover makes a campaign stop in St. James in 1928. Herbert Hoover won the election that year bolstered by pledges to continue the economic boom of the Coolidge years. It was...

Quevli Family Farm

Big, family-owned farms were big business at the turn of the 20th century in southern Minnesota. This postcard shows the Nels Quevli family farm in 1909. The farm was located in West Heron Lake...

A Womanless Wedding in Worthington

Here is the cast of a Womanless Wedding in Worthington. The Womanless Wedding took place on February 2, 1927. Womanless Weddings, often staged by men’s civic and fraternal groups, were popular entertainment prior to...

Dancing School

Circa 1890 photo of dancing school at the at the Free Press Hall in Mankato. As you can imagine, dancing school was an integral part of a child’s education–but it wasn’t just about learning...

Baberich Fabric Shop in St. Peter

This photo shows the interior of the Baberich Fabric Shop on Minnesota Avenue in St. Peter. Casper Baberich and his wife also operated a millinery shop on Minnesota Avenue, between Grace and Nassau Streets,...

The Mysterious Death of Clara Ober in Blue Earth

After one hundred and twenty years, the mystery of what happened to Clara Ober between the evening of July 29th, and 2:00 p.m. the following day remains unknown. The entire community around Blue Earth,...

Memorial Day 1919 in New Prague

New Prague’s Memorial Day celebration in 1919. The World War I veterans, band, Red Cross nurses, city residents, and a military band (along with a young man dancing on the storage building in the...

A Queen Anne Masterpiece in Canby

John Grant Lund was a feisty showman and self-made millionaire known locally as “The Real Estate King of Canby”. As one of southwestern Minnesota’s first land speculators, he was known to meet incoming trains...

State Hospital Diet Kitchens

Diet kitchens at the St. Peter State Hospital were used to distribute food from the main kitchen into the wards at meal time, prepare items for patients with special dietary needs in the ward,...

EACO Flour Mill Fire in Waseca

This photo from 1900 shows Loon Lake and the town of Waseca in the distance. On the left are the newly reconstructed buildings of the Everett, Aughenbaugh and Company (EACO) flour mill. The original...

Laura Baker’s School in Northfield

Laura Belle Baker was born in Chariton, Iowa on April 10, 1859. Her parents were liberal and civic-minded farmers who stressed the importance of education, tolerance, and empathy to their children. Shortly after graduating...

The White Eagle Service Station

The White Eagle Service Station in Worthington. The english cottage style station stood on the corner of Ninth Street and Second Avenue. English cottage style service stations were popular in the 1920s and 1930s...

Bernard Pietenpol – The Father of the Home Built Airplane

A new dawn of mechanical advancement was brought to the forefront of American consciousness because of the burgeoning automobile industry after World War I. Dreamers and adventurers alike were captivated by the use of...

The Ole Shows

George Engesser’s Circus was based in St. Peter, Minnesota. It was one of the largest motorized circuses in the US from the 1920s until the start of WWII. This poster advertises What Happened to...

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...

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,...

Merchants’ Carnivals

Merchants’ Carnivals, like this one in Rochester in 1893, were a popular way to showcase a merchant’s wares. They were much like modern-day trade shows. Each merchant would rent a booth in an exposition...

Layne’s Pharmacy in New Prague

Rose Holec graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Pharmacy with the degree of Pharmaceutical Chemist in 1919. She returned to her hometown, New Prague and married fellow pharmacist George Layne. Together, they...

Architecture of the State – The Rochester State Hospital

In 1873, the State of Minnesota was looking for a way to house an increasingly problematic group of residents —“habitual drunkards.” In order to pay for a facility to care for these individuals, the...

Colonel Colvill of the First Minnesota

William Colvill — does that name ring a bell? Unless you’re a Civil War history buff, this name probably doesn’t mean anything to you yet. Perhaps he’s been forgotten because he was a good,...

Lost Highway 61

History buffs and curiosity seekers revel in finding a piece of the past. Stumbling across something long-forgotten is a great way to travel back in time, even if it’s only for a few moments....

Demolished Homes of the Mayo Brothers

William J Mayo was the older of the two Mayo brothers who, along with five partners, founded the not-for-profit Mayo Clinic in Rochester. William was the more serious of the two brothers and was...

It Could Have Been A Ghost Town

This time of year, many city-dwellers travel south looking to take in the beauty of the season by roadtripping down through Red Wing and Wabasha to take in the fall colors of bluff country....

A Grand Estate for the Owners of Watkins

As preservationists approached Rockledge, just south of Winona, the home’s owner, Ernest L. King Jr., shuffled to the front door and yelled, “I’m tearing it down and there’s nothing you can do about it.”...