Friday, April 29, 2016

On This Date in Minnesota History: April 29

April 29, 1861 – While St. Paul and most of Minnesota generally acknowledge Josiah King to be “the first to volunteer for the Union cause,”1  the Anoka County Historical Society believes that the first volunteer was Anoka's Aaron Greenwald.

“According to Vickie Wendel, the history center's program director, Gov. Alexander Ramsey was in Washington, D.C., when the shooting started at Fort Sumter in South Carolina's Charleston harbor. After offering to provide the first troops to the Union, Ramsey sent a telegram back to Minnesota by horseback -- a missive delivered to attorney Willis Gorman, who was trying a case in Anoka's Fourth District Court.

During a recess, Gorman read aloud in the courtroom the request for volunteers. Greenwald happened to be there and was the first to respond, Wendel said.

‘That night, in St. Paul, there were militia meetings and Josiah King was the first to put his name down,’ Wendel said. ‘We figure Aaron beat him by four or five hours.’"2


Aaron Greenwald


If you are interested in finding out more about your family history in Minnesota, I specialize in researching  genealogical and historical records in Minn. and western Wis., including:
census records,  birth records,  death certificates, obits, grave site photos, ship passenger lists, marriage records and declarations of intent/naturalization records.  I will visit locations to research local history and county records, as well as take photos. Quick turnaround on MHS records.  Both short searches and family history reports.

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