Archive | History

History Theater’s “The Highwaymen” Hit on Some Crucially Unexplored Themes

I am finally putting up my “review” of The Highwaymen, a play produced by the History Theater that centered on the construction of I-94 through Saint Paul’s African-American Rondo neighborhood. Thanks to the generosity of a friend, I got to attend the play during its closing week. I liked it but, since I’m so interested […]

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Map Monday: Dakota and Ojibwe Place Names in Minneapolis

Via Nick Magrino’s Twitter feed, here’s a map of Minneapolis with some indigenous place names. Dakota and Ojibwe languages are different. Minnesota and Minneapolis both feature the same root, the  word “mni”, which means “water.” (E.g. the Lakota phrase mni wiconi, or “water is life” one of the slogans from the Standing Rock movement.) Here […]

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Color burst from the boulevard in front of 193 Griggs Street North, despite the low-hanging clouds that spawned drizzle.

Secrets Within Saint Paul Central

September 18, 2015 9.8 Miles Macalester-Groveland, Merriam Park, Lex-Ham From out of the patchy grey sky came intermittent sprinkles and the threat of heavier precipitation, but none of that was enough to keep me from my 2 p.m. appointment. Working in my favor was the ride wasn’t long, so I’d make it, even in a […]

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Chart of the Day: Minneapolis and Saint Paul Populations as Percent of their Peak

Via erstwhile gadfly David Brauer, here’s an interesting chart. The 2016 census population estimates came out last week and sparked an interesting conversation on Twitter this week. Here’s the original population chart, via former streets.mn board member / forum founder Nick Magrino: (He got the chart from a recently released Met Council report…) Following the chart […]

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Map Monday: Duluth as the Center of Half the Country

Via Perfect Duluth Day, this is a funny map from a civic booster-era advertisement touting the centrality of Duluth in 1888. The cartographer drew a line separating the country into two geographic catchments, the Chicago half and the Duluth half of the USA. Sort of a fun line to draw, in a way. I guess… […]

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Victoria Park: A Short History of Intentions

The vigorous and spirited debate about the future of the Ford Plant site in Highland Park got me thinking about another large, polluted, previously industrial site in Saint Paul. The history of development of Victoria Park, which is bounded by West 7th Street, Otto Avenue, and Shepard Road, offers a lesson in plans changing over […]

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A Little Media History for streets.mn Readers

I recently watched an amazing 29-minute, on-line documentary film about the last day of lead type at the New York Times. It’s called “Farewell Etaoin Shrdlu” and I recommend everyone watch it.  The date is July 2, 1978 and, for around a hundred years prior to that date, this was how newspapers were put together– […]

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Minneapolis Residents Opposed Housing for WWII Veterans

Originally posted on Neighbors for More Neighbors. The news that Minneapolis had again passed 400,000 residents last summer is a reminder that we did it before. Buried in our history is a story of a post-war Minneapolis that at one time had more than 520,000 residents, and has not seen as many since. Part of the […]

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Totem Town Trek

September 7, 2015 34.5 Miles West End, Downtown, Dayton’s Bluff, Battle Creek, Highwood Hills A long ride to the eastern reaches of Saint Paul, which started with some quick stops, first on the West End. Today’s plan was to reach and explore Boys Totem Town, Ramsey County’s live-in program for boys 14 to 18 who […]

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The Way of Paving

In 1893, Court Avenue in Bellefontaine, Ohio became the first American street paved with concrete. George Bartholemew is still celebrated for his “artificial stone” pavement. Bartholemew convinced the Bellefontaine City Council to try it around the Logan County Court House by posting a bond that guaranteed the pavement would last at least five years. The […]

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