Ramsey County History Magazine: Volume 43-1 Spring 2008

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

Volume 43

Volume 43, Number 1: Spring 2008

From Swede Hollow to Capitol Boulevard:
 Bethesda Hospital Celebrates Its 125th Anniversary (1883–2008)

Author: Dr. Donald B. Swenson

A survey of the history of Bethesda Hospital as it celebrated its 125th anniversary. At the start, the institution dealt primarily with Swedish and Norwegian clients. Initially located near Como Lake, it admitted its first patient in 1883. There is some information on Swede Hollow and Lowertown. The old Upham residence became the new hospital in 1892 and there soon was a training school for nurses. Pastor-administrators were in charge in the early days, but as time went on more professional managers were hired. There is also a discussion of rules for patients, money needs, and other matters. The organization started building a new hospital on Capitol Boulevard in the early 1930s. There is also biographical material on a few of the prominent physicians and nurses who served at Bethesda.
PDF of Swenson article

Growing Up In Saint Paul:
 When Selby and Snelling Had a Life of Its Own, 1943–1954

Author: Bernard P. Friel

The author, who was born in 1930, lived in a three-generation home at 1237 Selby. His first real job was at Park Drug Store at Selby and Snelling and that job lasted eleven years. He also worked on a railroad dining car. Friel went to Central High School, where he participated in sports and other activities. He also writes about Charles Schultz’s barbershop, O’Gara’s Bar, his experiences working at the Park Liquor Drug and Liquor, and the various activities at the corner in the 1940s, including his recollections of the big fire of 1947. In his adult years he became an attorney.
PDF of Growing Up in Sant Paul

A Whirlwind of Crimes:
 The Crimes and Times of Wonnigkeit and Ermisch

Author: Janice R. Quick

The story of two friends who ran around together and ran afoul of the law together. Both were of German ancestry. They were first arrested for burglary in 1892 and were sentenced to the St. Cloud Reformatory. When they got out, they jumped parole, went on a crime spree, and then killed a bartender in a downtown saloon. Wonnigkeit’s attorney defended him saying he was destroyed by alcohol, but the jury convicted them. A petition to commute their death sentences was signed by many prominent people who are mentioned. Aged nineteen and twenty years old, they were hanged together on a single scaffold in the Ramsey County jail on October 19, 1894 and were buried next to each other in Forest Lawn Cemetery.
PDF of Quick article