Saturday, October 27, 2012

On This Date in Minnesota History: October 27

October 27, 1849 – Benton County, Minn., was established on this date. “The county was named for Thomas Hart Benton, who was United States senator from Missouri during thirty years, 1821 to 1851.”
Upham, Warren; Minnesota Geographic Names, Their Origin and Historic Significance; Minnesota Historical Society (St. Paul, Minn., 1969); p. 49.

Senator Thomas Hart Benton - MO

Friday, October 26, 2012

On This Date in Minnesota History: October 26

October 26, 1958 – “Officials broke ground on a 600,000 square foot terminal” for what is now the Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport.

Runways at Minneapolis St. Paul Airport

Thursday, October 25, 2012

On This Date in Minnesota History: October 25

October 25, 2002 – Senator Paul Wellstone, his wife Sheila, daughter Marcia, two pilots, a driver and two campaign staffers all died when the small plane they were flying in crashed in northern Minn. near Eveleth.

Senator Paul Wellstone,_official_Senate_photo_portrait.jpg

Paul and Sheila Wellstone and their daughter Marcia's footstones in
Lakewood Cemetery, Minneapolis, Minn.

Photo taken by Pamela J. Erickson. Released into the public domain October 25, 2012, as long as acknowledgement included.

The Wellstone family memorial headstone in
Lakewood Cemetery, Minneapolis, Minn.

Photo taken by Pamela J. Erickson. Released into the public domain July 31, 2012, as long as acknowledgement included.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

On This Date in Minnesota History: October 24

October 24, 1954 - Hockey analyst/reporter and former NHL and WHA defenseman Joe Micheletti was born in International Falls, Minn. He “played in 142 WHA games with Calgary and Edmonton between 1977 and 1979, and 158 NHL games with St. Louis and Colorado between 1979 and 1982.”

Joe Micheletti

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

On This Date in Minnesota History: October 23

October 23, 1933 – Gangster Baby Face Nelson and four of his cohorts gained entry to the First National Bank in Brainerd at gunpoint just before 6 a.m. on this date when a worker came to check on the basement furnace. Armed with at least two machine guns and .45-caliber automatics, Nelson and friends corralled the bank employees one by one as they came into work and stretched them out on the front office floor. “When the tellers arrived, each was taken in turn to open their separate vaults.”

“With the money collected and the time approaching 9 a.m., Baby Face Nelson and his gang left the employees in a rear bathroom. The robbers sprayed the lobby with machine gun fire as they exited” to ensure no one would follow.  “The gunmen had been staying at [Sebago Resort] on the north side of Round Lake and were familiar with the first names of bank employees, work schedules and escape routes. 

In the end, the bank robbers stole $32,000 from the bank. The loss was covered by insurance.”

Baby Face Nelson

Monday, October 22, 2012

On This Date in Minnesota History: October 22

October 22, 1989 – Eleven-year-old Jacob Wetterling was kidnapped near his home in St. Joseph, Minn.  Jacob, his brother and a friend “were cycling home from a convenience store when a masked gunman came out of a driveway and ordered the boys to throw their bikes into a ditch and lie down on the ground. He then asked each boy his age. Jacob's brother and friend were told to run toward a nearby wooded area and not look back or else he would shoot them. After a short run, both boys did look back and saw the gunman grab Jacob by the elbow and walk him away. The whereabouts of Jacob and the identity of the gunman are still unknown.”

Jacob Wetterling

Sunday, October 21, 2012

On This Date in Minnesota History: October 21

October 21, 1948 – A fire swept through the main lodge at Lutsen Resort, Lutsen, Minn., destroying the entire building. No one was hurt. Damages were estimated at $200,000.