Ramsey County History magazine offers a wide variety of articles on the people, places and history of Ramsey County.
Volume 31, Number 4: Winter 1997
Rats, Politicians, Librarians: The Untold Stories of the Old St. Francis Hotel and the Rich Historical Legacy of Seventh Place
Author: Paul R. Gold
Seventh Place—old West Seventh Street between Wabasha and St. Peter—has been many things over the years. It was Vetal Guerin’s farmland, the site of the first city market and city hall, temporary home to state government, the St. Paul Public Library, and the St. Francis Hotel (1916–1955.) Many famous people stayed at the hotel; Charles Chaplin, Harry Houdini, Cab Calloway, and Babe Ruth, to name just a few. The block was also an entertainment center, with the Orpheum and Riviera theaters. The article evokes the vanished time when downtown flourished.
PDF of Gold article
Growing Up in St. Paul: Everyone Knew the Rules for the Rites of Passage and Transportation Was Mainly on Foot
Author: Brenda Raudenbush
The author grew up in St. Paul in the 1940s and ‘50s. “To every child . . . the very bricks, dogs, and all growing things of the Crocus Hill neighborhood were intimate companions because we moved among them on foot.” She recounts a childhood spent in active exploration of the world around her, with minimum adult interference. The memoir is full of detail.
PDF of Growing Up in Saint Paul
‘Empty Nests’ and Tea at the Ramsey House
Author: Patsy Raudenbush
A mini-memoir of the author’s early marriage years, visiting the home of Unity Church’s pastor, Arthur Foote, and the Alexander Ramsey House, then still occupied by Ramsey’s granddaughters.
PDF of Raudenbush, P. article
When Euphoria Dimmed: X-Rays’ First Victim; William Henslin and His Missing Gold Crown
Author: George McDonald
In 1902 Dr. Warren Dennis subjected carpenter William Henslin to long and repeated x-ray examinations searching for a lost dental crown. The resulting radiation burns led to the first malpractice case regarding misuse of x-rays. On appeal the case made important expert-witness law.
PDF of McDonald article
What’s Historic About This Site? The Saint Paul Building and Its 108-Year History
Author: Deanne Zibell Weber
Built in 1889 as the Germania Bank Buidling, the red sandstone structure at Fourth and Wabasha remains one of downtown’s finest buildings. This article traces its creation and subsequent uses.
PDF of Historic Site article
Vincent A. Yzermans, Journeys, People, and Places (Waite Park, Minn.: Park Press, 1994).
Robert Amerson, From the Hidewood: Memories of a Dakota Neighborhood (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1996).
Bonnie Watkins and Nina Rothchild, In the Company of Women: Voices from the Women’s Movement (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1996).
Rena Neumann Coen, Minnesota Impressionists (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1996).
PDF of Book Reviews