Archive | History

Duluth, the Urban Time Capsule

You never hear much about urban land use or transit oriented development in Duluth–or transit itself for that matter. Those topics seems to be restricted to the Twin Cities and sometimes Rochester. I’ve become much more familiar with the Zenith City over the last three years spent writing the new book “Twin Ports by Trolley—The […]

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Map Monday: Hamline-Midway c. 1886

Here’s an old map of Saint Paul from a 130 years ago, courtesy of Citizens for a Better Snelling Avenue:   The city boundary was still much farther South than it is today. It’s also interesting to see the names of all the wealthy property owners like JJ Hill and John Ireland. Back then, it must […]

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Restore the Grid! A Vision for the Center of Downtown Saint Paul

I live and work in Lowertown. Frequently my errands and wanderings take me up to the Rice Park/Landmark Center/7th Place areas. I’m always either on foot or bike. Over the last two-plus years of living here, I’ve become increasingly annoyed with the presence of the two “SuperBlocks”. These are the blocks that have 7th Street […]

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The Mississippi is well above its usual level as evidenced by the bank on the across the river.

Flood Lore from Yore and More

June 20, 2014 Highland Park, West End, Lowertown, Downtown 16.5 Miles A record-setting June for rainfall prompted me to make another trip along the Mississippi River to see how bad the flooding was. The 4.13 inches of rain that fell on June 19, a day before this ride, was the fifth wettest day since 1871, […]

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Franklin Library Celebrates 100 Years of Service

This year the Franklin Library celebrates its 100th year serving the East Phillips neighborhood in South Minneapolis.  In preparation for the anniversary celebration last month I researched the library’s long history by making my way through the branch’s annual reports and other documents from 1914 to 2014; this research has revealed a fascinating and intimate bond between […]

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Photo of the Day: The Intercity Monorail that Never Was

A year after the Minnesota Zoo monorail ceased operation, we look back at another short monorail in Dakota County that was a prototype for grander plans that never materialized. Enos Electric Railway Company of St. Paul, an excerpt from Larwence A. Martin’s Railroads in Minnesota page. Check it out for more fascinating history. “Businessmen sought […]

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