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Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Minnesota

HISTORY

Europeans first visited Minnesota and saw the headwaters of the River Mississippi in an expedition led by Daniel Greysolon de Du Luth in 1679.

The large majority of the original European settlers emigrated from Scandinavia and Germany, and the state remains a center of Scandinavian American.

The name Minnesota is a Dakota (a Native American language) word for "sky-tinted water".

Minnesota was admitted as the 32nd U.S. State on May 11, 1858.  The founding population was so overwhelmingly of New England origins that the state was dubbed "the New England of the West".

From fewer than 6,120 people in 1850, Minnesota's population grew to over 1.7 million by 1900.

George A Hormel set up a butcher’s shop in Austin, Minnesota on May 16, 1891. His business developed into the Hormel Foods Corporation, whose most famous product, spam, was first created in 1937.

The building in which George A. Hormel started his business. Preserved at the Mower County Fairgrounds in Austin.

The Minnesota State Capitol in Saint Paul opened its doors to the public for the first time on January 2, 1905. A hundred years later, the building's estimated value was $400 million.

The Minnesota State Capitol in Saint Paul, designed by Cass Gilbert.

Water skiing was invented in Lake City, Minnesota by Ralph Samuelson in 1922.

In 1945, "Hail! Minnesota", then the official song of the University of Minnesota, was designated as state song.

The Southdale Center, a shopping mall located in Edina, Minnesota opened on October 8, 1956. It is the oldest fully enclosed, climate-controlled mall in the United States. Complete with shops, a school, an auditorium and a skating rink ,Victor Gruen, the center's architect, designed the mall to challenge the "car-centric" America that was rising in the 1950s.

View of the center court. photo taken in 2009

In 1998 - Minnesota elected Jesse "The Body" Ventura, a former pro wrestler, as its governor.

The 1918 black-and-white photograph Grace, taken by Eric Enstrom in Bovey and later reproduced as a color painting by his daughter, was named state photograph in 2002. The man depicted in the photograph is Charles Wilden, a Swedish immigrant living in nearby Grand Rapids, Minnesota, who earned a meager living as a peddler and lived in a sod house.

Grace photograph with window light added to original.

FUN FACTS

Minnesota's nickname is "Land of 10,000 Lakes," but the U.S. state actually has more than 11,000 lakes.

Nearly 60 percent of Minnesota's residents live in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area known as the "Twin Cities."

Minnesota is the second northernmost U.S. state (after Alaska). Its isolated Northwest Angle in Lake of the Woods county is the only part of the 48 contiguous states lying north of the 49th parallel.


Private companies based in Minnesota include Cargill, the largest privately owned company in the United States. It is located in Minnetonka, a Minneapolis suburb.

Through the years, the Minnesota state legislature has voted on unsuccessful bills to designate Little House on the Prairie and On the Banks of Plum Creek as state book, and "Minnesota Blue" as official poem.

The Spam Museum at Austin, Minnesota, has 'Spambassadors' giving out Spam cubes on sticks.

There is a Twine Ball Museum in Darwin, Minnesota.

An anagram of 'Minnesota' is 'nominates.

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