Minnesota History

First settlers

The oldest human remains found in the region date from around 7000 BC. These remains belong to a single individual and were found in 1933 near Browns Valley, in the eastern state of Minnesota, hence the name Browns Valley Man. However, stone tools have been found on a hill in the town of Walker, which could be dated to 11000 or 12000 BC. C., so the human presence in the region could be earlier than the one dated thanks to the remains of the Browns Valley Man [1] .

Around 5000 BC. C., the residents of the margins of Lake Superior were the first in the continent to make metal tools. The high copper content was worked by hammering it to give it a rough shape and was subsequently heated and its toughness increased. Subsequently, it was returned to work to improve the form and it was overheated again. In this way, edges sharp enough to be used as knives or antler points could be achieved. Both copper ores and tools were traded throughout the region.

By the time the first European explorers arrived in Minnesota, the region was inhabited by “Dakota” tribes. Other tribes such as the Ojibwa, also called Chippewa or Anishinaabe, began to migrate to the west of the state around 1700. The economy of these tribes was based mainly on hunting and gathering. There were also small groups of natives of the Winnebago tribe, near present-day Long Prairie, who in 1855 were taken to the Blue Earth County Reservation.

European arrival-19th century

The French Pierre Esprit Radisson and Médard Chouart were, in 1660, the first residents of the old continent to arrive in the area of ​​the present state of Minnesota. In 1679, the French explorer Daniel Greysolon claimed the entire region on behalf of France. French influence in the area declined after 1763, when France ceded part of Minnesota to UK under the terms of the treaty which ended the French and Indian (War 1754 – 1763). In 1783, after the American War of Independence, the area between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River became part of the newly established United States. In 1803, Napoleon Bonaparte sold Louisiana to the United States, and thus the entire region of present-day Minnesota came under American control. Later in 1805, a small party, led by Zebulon M. Pike, arrived in the region with the mission of extending federal authority over the area.

In 1815, an American law restricted the fur trade to United States citizens, and the John Jacob Astor American Fur Company replaced the British-owned Northwest Company as the leading trading power in Minnesota.

The first military installation, Fort San Antonio (later named Fort Snelling), was built in 1819, and the first major settlement, Mendota, developed in its vicinity. With the establishment in 1834 of the main commercial factory of the American Fur Company in Mendota, the fort became the main settlement of Northwest America, as well as allowing various explorers to depart from there to the unknown lands of the region. In 1848, a group of Minnesotans met in Stillwater to plan the organization of the territory.

In 1849, the territory was created with the same limits that it has today, except for the western border; the lands west of the Mississippi and White Earth rivers were considered to be the property of the Indians. Until 1849 Minnesota was part of several territories including Louisiana and the Michigan territory. In 1851 several treaties were signed with the Sioux, which gave the property right to more than 11 million hectares, later, in 1858, Minnesota was admitted to the Union. Between 1850 and 1860, the population went from 5,354 to more than 172,000 residents. The Sioux, resentful of what they considered an unfair treaty, started a revolt in 1862. More than 500 settlers and American soldiers died before the decisive defeat of the Sioux at the Battle of Lake Woods (1862), after which they lost ownership of their reservations.

Abbreviated as MN by ABBREVIATIONFINDER, Minnesota was one of the first states to support the Union during the Civil War, after its conclusion, it enjoyed a period of economic boom. It is around this time that the state government and some railway companies are interested in attracting people to state territories, and for this reason the companies launch a series of pamphlets in European cities, mainly in Germany, with this objective. As a result there was a large wave of migration, mainly German, although to a lesser extent Norwegians, Scandinavians and Swedes also arrived.

In 1870 it was a state that was enjoying remarkable prosperity; the population reached almost 500,000 residents and the cultivated area exceeded 400,000 ha, of which half were planted with cereals. Minneapolis soon became one of the world’s great centers for flour production.

  • CountryAAH: Offers a full list of cities and towns in Minnesota, together with postal codes for each of them, and including capital city of Minnesota.

Minnesota from World War I to the present

At the end of World War I, Minnesota contributed approximately 70% of the iron ore production of the United States, the new period of bonanza would extend until the end of the 1920s, when the effects of what would be During the Great Depression, these effects were seen as the demand for the state’s agricultural products and the iron produced by its mines fell. Seventy percent of the workers who worked in iron mining were laid off as a result of the economic depression. With the entry of the USA into World War II, the economic situation of the state began to change due to the high demand for wheat and iron produced in the region, the war also brought the industrialization of the state.

After the war, the manufacturing industry had overtaken iron mining and wheat cultivation as the main source of income for the state. Iron mining, on the other hand, had fallen dramatically after the war, due to the collapse of national demand, and its importance in the Minnesota economy declined markedly. To stimulate the mining industry in the State, Minnesota decided to provide tax prizes to miners and steelmakers located in Minnesota, in 1964, and to stimulate the construction of mines and steel industries in the State. One of the main problems caused by the iron mining industry was the contamination of the water environment, by the waste generated by such mines. In 1978, the Minnesota Supreme Court ordered a Silver Bay mining company to stop releasing its waste into Lake Superior. The company was forced to build a special landfill, opened in 1980. During the 1980s and 1990s, other industrial companies, under pressure from environmental groups and the state government, did the same.

Minnesota History