The Old Court House


Ramsey County outgrew two courthouses between 1851 and 1932. There ain’t nobody alive who can remember the first one and only a precious few can still recall the imposing old pile of rock pictured here. Construction began on the second courthouse in 1885. At the time Ramsey County was growing by leaps and bounds. In […]

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The Empire Building


The seven-story  Empire Building at 360 North Robert Street was completed in 1891. Designed by St. Paul architect Clarence H. Johnston, the Jacobsville Sandstone, red brick  office and banking building was formerly known as the Manhattan Building and the Capital National Bank Building. At the turn of the century, the famous stenographer, Miss Ruth M. Hillman […]

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Towering Above Wabasha


Joseph Friedman already owned several small St. Paul movie houses when he opened the Tower Theatre 1921. The building designed by architectural firm of Toltz, King and Day, is remembered for an elegant facade and patterned brickwork. Inside a small marble lobby gave way to an enormous 1,100 seat auditorium containing a balcony, orchestra pit, […]

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The O’Donnell Shoe Factory


“A new $100,000 shoe factory, employing between 900 and 1,000 workmen, is being erected by the O’Donnell Shoe Co. in St. Paul. William O’Donell is president of the company. The directors include Charles Patterson, George J. Freeman, William F. Enright and Andrew J. Schmitz. At present O’Donnel Shoe Co. employs 500 hands and is building […]

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Goethe Got it Write


I’m sure the young folks who bought these postcards printed by R. Stienman & Co. in 1911 filled them with warm sentiments. For me,  filling up the space on the back of a postcard is a little like finding lines to place between pictures on this blog.  When  in doubt you can’t lose with a limerick. […]

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