Ramsey County History Magazine: Volume 26-1 Spring 1991

Ramsey County History magazine offers a wide variety of articles on the people, places and history of Ramsey County.

Volume 26

Volume 26, Number 1: Spring 1991

Small and Cohesive: St. Paul’s Resourceful African-American Community
Author: Arthur C. McWatt
This article covers notable people, organizations, businesses, trends, and accomplishments in St. Paul’s African-American community, 1910–1943. It discusses major institutions, such as Pilgrim Baptist and St. James AME churches, the Appeal newspaper, and the hiring of blacks by the police and fire departments. African-American leaders in the Minnesota legislature, law, medicine, teaching, business, and other fields are covered. Although employment prospects were limited initially, they gradually improved, especially in meat packing and the railroads. World War II and the GI Bill helped blacks get jobs and more educational opportunities. “It was truly a take-off period in St. Paul’s economic history which few would soon forget.”
PDF of McWatt article

A Period Of National Tragedy—The Homeless and the Jobless in the 1930s
Author: Virginia Brainard Kunz
The Great Depression in Ramsey County, seen in part through the experiences and words of A. E. Heckman. Heckman came to St. Paul in 1931 to lead the United Charities. In 1932, when the Depression finally took full effect in St. Paul, he headed a unique public-private partnership, running the county welfare board while being paid by United Charities. Government, private charity, and leading citizens and businesses worked together to provide relief. Heckman also directed WPA projects in the area. Heckman returned to United Charities in 1935. Despite all the charitable and other relief efforts, the Depression did not began to lift until 1940.
PDF of Kunz article

A Minnesotan Abroad: Alexander Wilkin and the ‘Dumpy’ Queen
Author: Ronald M. Hubbs
Wilkin, an important early Minnesota citizen, went to Europe three times, 1855–1858, and wrote letters home. Mostly he griped, though he did like Florence and big events that involved dressing up: “I wore my uniform which was much admired . . . .” He met Queen Victoria, whom he found “short and dumpy with bad complexion and not in the least pretty.”
PDF of Hubbs article

What’s Historic About This Site? Woodland Park Historic District
A brief summary of the rise, decline, and revival of the neighborhood bounded by Marshall, Selby, Dale, and Kent streets. During its rise, 1880–1924, prominent citizens such as Judson Bishop, D. W. Lawler, and William Marshall built houses there.
PDF of Historic Site

Book Reviews

Karal Ann Marling, Blue Ribbon: A Social and Pictorial History of the Minnesota State Fair (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1990).
Leonard K. Eaton, Gateway Cities and Other Essays (Ames, Ia.: Iowa State University Press, 1989).
PDF of Book Reviews

PDF of Letters to the Editor

PDF of A Matter of Time