The Young-Quinlan Housewarming

It was on this day ninety years ago that the doors to the Elizabeth C. Quinlan building in Minneapolis first opened its doors. It was the new home of the Young-Quinlan department store. The building was designed by residential architect Frederick L. Ackerman from New York to be a  “beautiful home” for customers to shop in. In fact, the grand opening of the building was dubbed a housewarming by Quinlan.

Thousands of people lined up along Nicollet, as well as Ninth Street, which was almost shut down to automobiles because of the crowd, for the chance at being among the first to see  Quinlan’s “perfect gem” of a building. The store would be open from 10:00 am until 5:30 pm, and again from 7:30 until 10:00 pm to allow everyone a chance to tour the store.

Minneapolis Mayor George Leach spoke at the opening ceremony and remarked that Quinlan “would always be remembered as one of the true builders of this city.” He then called for three cheers for Quinlan, which the crowd of thousands gave enthusiastically.

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Fred D. Young of the Young-Quinlan Company

While many people recognize the name Elizabeth Quinlan because of her public role and decades of leadership at the Young-Quinlan Company, few know about Fred Young.

Frederick Dean Young was born in Freeport, Illinois in 1862. By the time he was thirty years old, Young was living in Minneapolis with is mother and brother and one of the top salespeople at Goodfellow and Eastman Dry Goods. It was there that he met Elizabeth Quinlan. Young and Quinlan became good friends and he convinced her to join him in opening their own specialty shop for women. Quinlan agreed to join Fred D. Young and Company as a buyer and salesperson for three months. If it didn’t work out, she would return to her job at Goodfellow and Eastman.

Young opened his first store in a subleased corner of Vrooman’s Glove Company in the Syndicate Building. And of course, the business worked out. Young handled the business administration and advertising for the store, while Quinlan did the buying and selling. Quinlan saved her money and was able to buy an equal partnership with Young in the early 1900s. In 1903, Young recognized the “value of [Quinlan’s] name in connection with a store devoted exclusively to fashion to women,” which led him to change the name of the store to the Young-Quinlan Company.

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Elizabeth C. Quinlan Building: The Ramp

This week marks the 90th anniversary of the opening of the Elizabeth C. Quinlan building in downtown Minneapolis. The building at 901 Nicollet was home to the Young-Quinlan Department Store. I’ll be sharing interesting tidbits about the building, the store, Elizabeth Quinlan, and Fred Young all week. First up: The Ramp.

Even before the Elizabeth C. Quinlan building opened in 1926, word began to spread about the building’s underground parking ramp. The underground ramp was the one of the first of its kind in the country, and the concept was quickly copied by other retail establishments.

Quinlan asked all of her employees to refer to the underground parking as “the ramp” or “the parking floor”, and never as a parking garage. The ramp wasn’t just a convenience for Young-Quinlan customers; it was a public service as well. It was the largest parking ramp in the city with stalls for 250 automobiles. It was open twenty-four hours a day, every day. This convenience made the ramp an attractive place to park in the evenings. Anyone could park in the ramp between 6:00 p.m. and 1:00 a.m. for just a quarter. As an added benefit, expert washing and oiling services were offered in the ramp as well.

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The Gates of Stonebridge

In 1907, St. Paul businessman and inventor Oliver Crosby purchased twenty-eight acres of land on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River in St. Paul. There, he built a twenty thousand square foot brick estate that he called Stonebridge. In his book Once There Were Castles, author Larry Millett claims that Stonebridge was “the greatest estate ever built in St. Paul.”

The house was remarkable, but the grounds were what visitors raved about. There were two artificial lakes, large sunken gardens, a 100-foot-long pergola, and a reservoir that fed a series of waterfalls that flowed beneath the picturesque stone bridge that gave the house its name.

Crosby only lived at Stonebridge for six years; he died in 1922. Most of the property around Stonebridge was sold off after Crosby’s wife Elizabeth died, but the mansion stayed intact until 1944 when it was tax-forfeited to the state. Unable to find a use for the mansion, the state demolished Stonebridge in 1953.

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Enter Marlon Brando

Founded in 1858, Shattuck Military Academy in Faribault was one of the oldest and most respected college preparatory boarding schools in the Midwest. Shattuck was known for its rigid military discipline, strong academics, and were used to dealing with students who had been expelled from other schools. Enter Marlon Brando. After being expelled from his local high school for reportedly riding a motorcycle through the halls, Marlon Brando was sent to Shattuck Military Academy in 1941. Brando’s father, Marlon Brando Sr. attended Shattuck in the early 1910s and hoped the rigid program would sort his son out.

By all accounts, Brando was a popular but roguish cadet. Teachers at Shattuck have said that Brando was not disrespectful, but a prankster and a “character.” In his autobiography “Brando: Songs My Mother Taught Me,” he recalled the bell that rang every fifteen minutes to remind students to attend drills, meals, classes, and other duties. One night, Brando recalled that he climbed the bell tower, removed the 150-pound clapper and carried it about 200 yards away and buried it. When school authorities found it missing the next morning, Brando organized a student committee to find out who committed the crime to divert suspicion from himself. The ploy worked, and Brando said that he would take the burial place with him to his grave.

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Schmid Farmhouse Ruins

The Schmid Farmhouse is located on a hill above Lake Minnetonka. It was constructed in 1876 by German immigrants Joseph and Benedict Schmid. Although Benedict was known to have lived in the home at one time, Joseph and his family spent the most time living and working on the 156-acre farm. Their livestock included dairy cows, horses, cattle, pigs, chickens, and sheep and the primary crops were wheat, oats, corn, hay, potatoes, and apples.

Joseph’s son, Joseph jr. began selling acreage in the 1890s after the farm was transferred to him. It wasn’t until 1905 that the farmhouse and the last of the land was sold to a nearby dairy farmer. That farmer rented the old farmhouse out to workers of his farm until 1948. Thankfully, the abandoned farmhouse was spared the wrecking ball because it was located within the private estate of professional wrestler Verne Gagne. Gagne gifted the land to be used as a park after his death. The Schmid farmhouse is now part of the Lake Minnetonka Regional Park.

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Edith Robbins Daniel

Edith Robbins was the eldest daughter of Robbinsdale’s founder Andrew B. Robbins. She attended prep school at Macalester and Carleton Colleges, and then went on to graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Minnesota in 1894, and a Master of Arts in 1896. For several years, Edith Robbins taught in the various grades of the public school of Robbinsdale. Her experience teaching in Robbinsdale helped her secure the position of Principal of the Madelia High School. That experience lead her back to Minneapolis where she accepted a position at East Minneapolis High School. From there, she was transferred to Central High School where she worked until her marriage to Thomas Lester Daniel in 1907. In 1920, she was elected as the School Director in Independent School District 24 in Robbinsdale. She served two, three-year terms in this position. Edith Robbins Daniel served on the Robbinsdale School Board for twenty-four years.

In addition to her work in education, Edith Robbins Daniel did extraordinary work on the home front during World War I. Under her personal supervision, several thousand garments were made from dozens of bolts of new fabric donated for the cause. Edith’s workrooms included the T. B. Walker offices at 807 Hennepin Avenue on “heatless Mondays” and the Charles Pillsbury residence, where she kept scores of sewing machines supplied with material and volunteer workers. All these garments were sent to people in need in France and Belgium.

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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 mixed cargo on November 21, 1898, the Arthur Orr was driven ashore during a heavy storm in the early morning hours of November 22 at the mouth of the Baptism River near Silver Bay. No lives were lost, but most of the cargo spilled out of the ship and into Lake Superior.

The Arthur Orr was towed back to Chicago to be repaired and lengthened to 334’ in 1899. She returned to service later that year and served until 1947 when she was scrapped in Hamilton, Ontario.

Photos courtesy of the University of Minnesota Duluth, Kathryn A. Martin Library.

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 one of the greatest victories in presidential history. Hoover won fifty-eight percent of the votes. Democrat Al Smith got just forty percent. Hoover captured 444 electoral votes to Smith’s 87. When the Wall Street Crash of 1929 struck less than eight months after he took office, Hoover tried to combat the ensuing Great Depression with moderate government public works projects such as the Hoover Dam. Hoover only served one term as President, he was defeated by Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932.

Photo courtesy of the Watonwan County Historical Center.

WWI Army Nurse Tena Heglund Johnson

During World War I, the military recruited 20,000 nurses for duty. More than 10,000 of them served overseas during the Great War. Most nurses either served at one of the 58 military hospitals or helped staff 47 ambulance companies that operated on the Western Front. This photo shows Tena Heglund Johnson of Fosston in her Army Nurse Corps uniform shortly before she left for Europe in 1918. She was 31 years old when she enlisted. After the war, Tena continued to work as a nurse at the Fosston Hospital.

Photo courtesy of the East Polk Heritage Center.

Mail-a-Book

Have you ever wondered how avid readers in rural communities kept up with their favorite authors in the 1950s and 1960s? If they lived in Aitkin, Chisago, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs, or Pine county, they probably participated in the Mail-a-Book delivery program. This photo shows a patron receiving the Mail-a-Book program catalog in the mail in 1959. He would choose a book and mail the form back to the library, who would then send the requested book to the patron. When he was done, he’d simply return the book by mail.

Photo courtesy of the East Central Regional Library.

The Pressroom at the Little Falls Herald

Take a look inside of the pressroom at the Little Falls Herald in the 1910s. The The Herald was a weekly newspaper that covered local news in Little Falls and served as a news source for other nearby towns in the county. The paper also included state, national, and some international news within its eight-page, six-column format. The Herald was published each Friday beginning in March 1889. The last issue went to press in August 1950.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society (17600).

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 Township near Lakefield in Jackson County. It consisted of 2,243 acres of land in sections 25, 26, 27, 33, 34, 35, and 36, The caption on the postcard states that the farm had ten sets of buildings. Nels, however, never worked on the Quevli family farm; he was in real estate and later worked as a lawyer.

Photo courtesy of the Jackson County Historical Society.

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 the advent of television. They consisted of a mock wedding in which males dressed the roles of the entire wedding party, including the bride, mother of the bride, bridesmaids, and flower girl. These events were often fundraisers, since many in the community were more than willing to pay admission to see their male neighbors dressed in female attire. The men in this photo were raising money for the Woman’s Relief Corps, Auxiliary of the Grand Arm of the Republic.

Photo courtesy of the Nobles County Historical Society.

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 how to waltz. Children also learned etiquette and how to interact socially with their peers and members of the opposite sex (all while under strict supervision of the adults who can be seen sitting in the background, of course!).

Photo courtesy of the Blue Earth County Historical Society.

Dakota and Ojibwe Battle Near Anoka

On this day in 1839, Dakota warriors engaged in two battles with the Ojibwe. The first took place near the mouth of the Rum River (Anoka) near where this photo was taken. The other, at Battle Point (Stillwater), claimed many Ojibwe lives. Both of the battles together claimed more than 100 Ojibwe lives (no report on how many Dakota were lost). The Dakota spent the next month along the shores of Mde Maka Ska (Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis) honoring their victory with dancing and singing.

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, and a small flower shop out of the front porch of their home on the northwest corner Third and Nassau Streets.

When this photo was taken in 1905, women either made clothing for themselves and their families, or had a seamstress make it for them. Most small-town dry goods stores carried fabric, but the selection was limited and many other women in the same town used the same fabric for their clothing. However, larger towns often had a dedicated fabric store where women could find a wider variety of type, color, and print.

Photo courtesy of the Nicollet County Historical Society.

The final Government Land Sale in Thief River Falls

One hundred and eleven years ago today (June 20, 1904), the final Government Land Sale took place in Thief River Falls. A crowd of towns people and hopeful settlers gathered on the north side of the old Washington School to watch as the last 93,000 acres of surveyed land were sold. The town had been established just 17 years prior.

Photo courtesy of the Pennington County Historical Society.

Bailey Brothers Prove They Sell Durable Overalls

In 1902, a large crowd surrounded the Bailey Brothers Store on Main Street in Belle Plaine as the brothers demonstrated the durability of the overalls they sold in their store. The publicity stunt was advertised in the newspaper and brought out more than one hundred people. A local band played music and the crowds cheered as the brothers pulled and tugged at the pants. There is no information about whether the sales stunt was a success, but it undoubtedly brought more than a few new customers into their store on that day.

Photo courtesy of the Scott County Historical Society.

Expeditionary Crew for the Northern Pacific Railway

This 1869 photo shows the main expeditionary crew for the Northern Pacific Railway. The crew consisted of one Native American woman, two Native American men, and twenty-five railroad scouts. Together, they charted a westward route across the state while financial backers were being courted. Crews like this often maneuvered through tough terrain such as swamps, bogs, and tamarack forests to find the best route. Leading this crew were Pierre Bottineau and G. A. Bracket.

Photo courtesy of the New Brighton Area Historical Society.

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 center of the photo!) gathered to honor servicemen who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

Just a reminder that Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for those who have died in service of the United States of America, while Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans.

Photo courtesy of the New Prague Area Historical Society.

The Olympis Quartet

Meet the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railway’s singing porters. This group of gentlemen were known as the Olympis Quartet in 1922. Many railway lines throughout the country trained their porters in quartet singing to entertain train guests.

Photo courtesy of the New Brighton Area Historical Society.

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)

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, and provide hot water for coffee and tea throughout the day. Because diet kitchens were located in each ward, cooks often knew the dietary needs and preferences of patients they prepared meals for better than the workers in the central kitchen. This photo shows a diet kitchen on the fourth floor of the center building in 1918.

Photo courtesy of the St. Peter Regional Treatment Center archives.

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 EACO mill burned to the ground in 1896. Here is a historical account of the events of August 25, 1896:

At about twenty minutes after 3 o’clock Tuesday morning, Aug. 25, 1896, the fire alarm and mill whistle aroused our citizens and it was soon discovered that the old and long-vacant coffin factory, on the west side of the M. & St. L. railroad track, nearly opposite the flour mill of Everett, Aughenbaugh & Co., was on fire. It made a terribly hot fire, but soon burned to the ground, and the people were just congratulating one another that the fire was no worse, when the cry went forth that the flour and bran house on the south of the mill was on fire.

Undoubtedly the heat upon the sheet iron covering had set the woodwork inside on fire. Every effort was made by the fire department to keep down the flames, but the high wind and the bursting of a water main in the south part of the city at that time, reducing the pressure, combined to aid the flames which were carried directly into the windows of the mill. It was short work for the consuming element to destroy one of the. best mills in the state, the accumulation of years of industry, economy, and safe business management. Two cars loaded with flour were also consumed. The total loss of the EACO Milling Company was estimated at $70,000, and the property of the mill was insured for $45,000. The old coffin factory was of little value and had been, for a long time, the tramps’ paradise. There is no doubt that the fire was either the work of incendiarism or the carelessness of tramps. The mills were at once rebuilt on a more elaborate plan than before.

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St. Patrick’s Day parade in St. Paul

More than 300 people were on hand for the first St. Patrick’s Day parade in St. Paul in 1851. For several years the parades were led by the Irish Catholic Temperance Society, and in 1856 the Benevolent Society of Erin hosted a dinner complete with toasts of cold water instead of liquor. After the Civil War, the festivities began to get rowdy and lasted much of the day and well into the night. By the turn of the century, Archbishop John Ireland had enough of the indulgent celebrations that had turned into what he called “midnight orgies”, and put a stop to the parade and celebrations.

It wasn’t until 1967 that another St. Patrick’s Day parade was held in St. Paul. Planning for the parade took place in just two months, but many traditions we see today came from that first parade, such as the swath of emerald paint down the center of the parade route. The tradition of crowning Ms. Shamrock began with that first parade too–Agnes Sullivan was the lucky lady. The parade started at noon and left from Hilton (now the Radisson) and proceeded down Kellogg Blvd. to the St. Paul Hotel; the entire parade lasted only 40 minutes.

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Central School in Grand Rapids

Interior of the Central School in downtown Grand Rapids. Built in 1895, the three story building served as an elementary school from 1895 to 1972. A community effort restored the building in 1984 and it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society (MI8.9 GR5.2 p4)

Artist Nicholas Brewer

Nicholas Brewer was a prominent 19th-century portrait and landscape painter. He was born in Olmsted County and was raised on a farm along the Root River. He was a student at the National Academy of Design in New York, where he also exhibited. Once he moved back to Minnesota, Brewer painted a crucifixion scene in the Cathedral of St. Paul. He was highly sought after as a portrait painter in the Twin Cities. He painted portraits of notable citizens such as Theodore Hamm, Frank Kellogg, and John Ireland, among others. This photo from 1900 shows Brewer in his St. Paul studio. The large portrait on the right is of Father Thomas J. Ducey, founder of St. Leo’s Roman Catholic Church in New York City.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society

The Emporium

The Emporium opened in downtown St. Paul in 1920. It was located on the corner of Robert and Seventh Streets, which was a busy shopping district at the time. Rothschild’s, the Golden Rule, Schuneman’s, and Donaldson’s were all within a few blocks at one time or another. The Emporium’s millinery department and crystal shop rivaled those of the bigger-named stores. The Tea Room was a favorite lunch spot for shoppers and people who worked downtown. The Emporium and Tea Room closed in 1968. Although the façade has drastically changed, the building still stands and houses offices.
Photos courtesy of the Pioneer Press Archive

Kresge’s Five and Dime

A 1957 Valentine’s Day window display at Kresge’s Five and Dime in downtown Minneapolis. Kresge’s was located on Nicollet Mall, across from Donaldson’s. Kresge’s Five and Dime stores would later evolve into K-Mart.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society

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 because they blended with the residential areas they were often on the edge of.

Travel in style!

Here is an interior view of the North Coast Limited All-Pullman train. The train went into service on May 16, 1930. The modern Pullman car was exhibited for a week before going into service at Saint Paul’s Union Station.

Photo courtesy of the New Brighton Area Historical Society

Oliver “Tuddy” Kaldahl

Spectators flocked to this 1942 ski jumping tournament in Glenwood, MN. Glenwood became a popular place to hold tournaments because it was the home town of Oliver “Tuddy” Kaldahl. Tuddy was the 1916 junior ski jump champion at the first National Ski Championship held in Glenwood, Minnesota. He set the American record for four years straight. In 1921, Tuddy won the Canadian National Class A crown. He went onto compete and win numerous events throughout his skiing career and became a highly celebrated ski jumper throughout the world.

Van Cleve Park

Ice skating at Van Cleve Park in Minneapolis in 1901. This 1.5 acre pond was created in the southern half of the park in 1890. That winter, and for several years after, the park board cleared the snow from the pond so it could serve as a skating rink in the winter. A warming house was added for skaters in 1905.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society

Indian Mounds Park Toboggan Slide

Toboggan slide at Indian Mounds Park in St. Paul. When these photos were taken in 1939, the park covered 135 acres and included this slide, a warming house, refectory house, two tennis courts, and six horseshoe courts.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society.

Fandel’s Department Store

Interior view of Fandel’s Department Store in St. Cloud from 1946. Fandel’s opened in 1900 on St. Germain Street, between Sixth and Seventh. The building was razed in the 1980s to make way for the new Herberger’s department store.

The Pine River Dam

The Pine River Dam near Brainerd was the fourth dam built as part of the Mississippi River Headwaters Reservoirs system. The original timber dam was constructed from 1884-1886. A concrete dam replaced it in 1905. This photo was taken in 1910.

The dam site once included a house, office, a barn, a carpenter shop, a blacksmith shop, two warehouses, a wood shed, and a chicken coop. These structures were demolished through extensive redevelopment for public recreation.

A. Knoblauch and Sons

Alois Knoblauch arrived in Minneapolis from Germany in 1854. The following year, Alois established the first shoe store in the city at 26 First Street N. Alois ran the store for more than 30 years with his sons Anton and Frank. After Alois’ death, Anton took over A. Knoblauch and Sons Fine Shoe Store. The brothers operated stores 41 Washington Avenue S, 121 Washington Avenue S, 239 Nicollet, and 514 Nicollet. They also operated shoe departments in several department stores. In 1911, Anton and Frank decided to dispose of their shoe business. Anton went on to a career in real estate investment.

Armistice Day Blizzard of 1940

The weather on the morning of November 11, 1940 appeared to be harmless. Many people were outdoors, taking advantage of the mild weather. The weather forecast that morning was for colder temperatures and a few flurries. No one was prepared for what was to come. The storm started with rain but quickly turned to snow. By the time the blizzard tapered off on the 12th, the Twin Cities had received 16.7 inches of snow, Collegeville 26.6 inches, and 20-foot drifts were reported near Willmar. In all 49 Minnesotans lost their lives in this storm, many of them hunters trapped by the sudden turn of weather. This photo was taken on Excelsior Boulevard, west of Minneapolis, after the storm.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society

A Thief River Falls Railroad Crew

A railroad crew poses on the tracks with shovels. This crew laid track near Thief River Falls around 1905. Behind the crew, a pump trolley is visible on the tracks. A pump car is a railroad car powered by its passengers. It was often used to get from the nearest town to where the crew would work at the end of the track.

Photo courtesy of the Pennington County Historical Society.

The Mesaba Railway

The Mesaba Railway ran streetcar service between Hibbing and North Hibbing. This car is stopped near the Oliver Hotel on Third Avenue in North Hibbing in 1921. This stop was at the north end of the line.

Photo courtesy Iron Range Research Center.

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 Ole – one of the many Ole Shows put on by the circus. George’s father, Matthew, founded the Engesser Brewing Company in 1916.

Photo courtesy of the Nicollet County Historical Society.

Herdliska Jewelry Store

The Herdliska Jewelry Store was located at 101 South 10th Avenue in Princeton. Raleigh Herdliska also co-owned the hardware store just a few buildings away. Pictured here in 1900 are Mr. Herdliska, August Schlesner, Fred Mueller, and August Meyer.

Photo courtesy of the Mille Lacs County Historical Society.

Spruce Creek CCC Camp

Superintendents at the Spruce Creek Civilian Conservation Corps camp near Lutsen in the mid-1930s.

Workers at the Spruce Creek CCC camp were responsible for building the many of the trails in the Cascade River State Park. Other projects included a highway concourse and the Cascade River overlook. The Spruce Creek CCC camp operated from July 24, 1934 until October 1936.

Photo courtesy of the Cook County Historical Society.

First National Bank in Ironton

This photo of the First National Bank in Ironton (Crosby) shows the wealth that flowed through the Cuyuna Iron Range in the 1920s. Two tellers were always available to customers — one to receive money (deposits) and one to pay money (withdrawals). The bars surrounding the tellers were gleaming brass. The counter was made of rich, dark wood with marble running along the bottom. The entire public space of the bank was carpeted — a rarity for public buildings at the time. Did you notice the spittoon on the floor between the two tellers?

Photo courtesy of the Cuyuna Iron Range Heritage Network.

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.

A 1957 Harp Recital

Such a beautiful instrument. Students from The College of St. Scholastica in Duluth playing harps at a recital in 1957. Pictured left to right are Dea Bowden, Betty Dunlap, Ann Sander, Vivian Schuldt, Elverna Stalvig, and Diane Smith.

Photo courtesy of The College of St. Scholastica.

Turnblad’s Painted Window

This hand-blown, enamel-painted window can be seen on the grand stairway landing of the American Swedish Institute (formerly the Turnblad mansion). The ornate window is a reproduction of the painting Valdemar IV Atterdag Holding Visby to Ransom by Carl Gustaf Hellqvist. The Danish King Valdemar IV is seen sitting on his throne to the right with his army in the background. The Danish have threatened to destroy the town of Visby, Sweden unless the citizens give up all their valuable possessions. The mayor of Visby is seen in the center with his fist clenched. His beautiful wife is by his side looking toward the heavens for divine intervention. The original painting was too small to be placed in the space allowed for the window, so the craftsman extended the length by placing himself in the artwork on the left side.

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.

A Daring Robbery

The Queen’s float at the Anoka Street Carnival on October 13, 1906. Queen Margaret Saunders and King Robert Streetly are seated in the back of the float.

A daring robbery took place during the street carnival that year. At around 9:00 p.m., while most of the town people were gathered on Main Street to watch the carnival, two masked men with revolvers attacked the operator at the Northern Pacific Railroad Depot. The operator had been working at his desk when he heard two men enter the waiting room. A moment later he looked up to find the two masked men pointing their revolvers at him and demanding that he open the till. They removed $39 from the drawer and ran out of the building.

Photo courtesy of the Anoka County Historical Society

Concord Coach Line

Colonel Alvaren Allen began stagecoach service from St. Paul to Crow Wing with his four-horse Concord coach line in 1854. As the need to travel west and south of St. Paul grew, so did the coach line. Within a few years Allen had eight coaches departing from St. Paul each day; three to Minneapolis, one each to Crow Wing, Stillwater, Mankato, and  Hudson, WI. The last coach would follow a route through New Ulm, Faribault, and Owatonna. The coaches carried freight as well as passengers — which mean the latter were forced to hold on as best they could as the stagecoach bumped over well rutted, but poorly maintained, wagon trails. In this photo from 1898, several gentlemen from Mankato are about to board the Concord coach for St. Paul. Photo courtesy of the Blue Earth Historical Society.

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 hall and employees would dress up in costumes decorated only with items from their business. This carnival appears to have had a medieval theme.

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.

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 opened Layne’s Pharmacy in New Prague. George and Rose can be seen here in their pharmacy in 1923.

Photo courtesy of the New Prague Area Historical Society