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:

hamline midway 1886 map


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 have seemed like the town was owned by the railroads (and the Catholic church). is a non-profit and is volunteer run. We rely on your support to keep the servers running. If you value what you read, please consider becoming a member.

2 Responses to Map Monday: Hamline-Midway c. 1886

  1. Matty Lang
    Matty Lang November 17, 2014 at 9:59 am #

    Territorial Road used to go right in front of where my house now stands. At times, I can feel its ghostly presence.

  2. Alex Cecchini
    Alex Cecchini November 17, 2014 at 10:07 am #

    I think it’s pretty interesting to see that even back then [with traditional development patterns linked by commuter rail service (Short Line ran every 30 minutes with travel time between downtowns of 30 minutes total!) and eventually streetcars] developers almost always targeted one group of social class. Land sales came with price floors for new houses, lot size minimums, etc to ensure only certain bands of people would be able to afford living there. We like to think that auto-oriented suburbs and zoning did this (and perhaps they exacerbated the issue – certainly seemingly middle class single family homes are afar more intermingled with apartments in late-19th century development than new suburbs of today), but I think the desires of people to live near their own status or up and developers’ desire to meet that demand has always been there.

Note on Comments welcomes opinions from many perspectives. Please refrain from attacking or disparaging others in your comments. sees debate as a learning opportunity. Please share your perspective in a respectful manner. View our full comment policy to learn more.

Thanks for commenting on!