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Summer in the city

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

Summer in the city

An unidentified man opens a fire hydrant for a young boy on a hot summer day. The image was captured by a photographer for the Minneapolis Star Tribune on June 21, 1938.

For details, view the image in our online collections database.

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Soldiers discharged lists with photo of Henry Lindergreen – July 25, 1862

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

Henry Lindergreen was a regular correspondent of Minnesota Lieutenant Governor Ignatius Donnelly and his letters  have been featured in the Daybook nine times since June, 1861.  Before the war, Lindergreen worked in the newspaper business and, as a Private in the 1st Minnesota, Company H, he wrote lengthy descriptions of the places and battles he experienced while in service.  Before leaving Fort Snelling with the Regiment, Lindergreen developed a hernia that would plague him until his discharge over a year later.
See a full biography of him at the 1st Minnesota page.

“List of soldiers discharged on Surgeon’s certificate 1st Min.
Name   Co. Rank Date of dis.  Disease
Twitchell Newton M H Private July 23/62  Valvular disease of the Heart.
Lindergreen H.W. “ “ “ 25   Inquinal Hernia
Deugel Christian “ “ Oct. 30   Amaurosis
Wells Henry G.  G “ Nov. 28th   Gun shot wound in testicle
Mulrey   E Sergt “  “   Varicose Veins
[Miller] Jno C.  L Pri “  “   Syphilis secondary
Bates Wm  H “ Dec. 21st   Dropsy
Young Jos. J.  D Cor Jan 1st    Gun shot wound thro. right Lung”

Disease definitions from The Medical Dictionary.
Inguinal hernia:  hernia in which a loop of intestine enters the inguinal canal
Amaurosis:  Blindness, especially without apparent change in the eye, as from a cortical lesion
Varicose Veins:  swollen, distended and knotted veins, usually in the subcutaneous tissues of a lower limb
Syphilis Secondary: syphilis (a venereal disease) in the second of three stages, with fever, multiform skin eruptions (syphilids), iritis, alopecia, mucous patches, and severe pain in the head, joints, and periosteum
Dropsy:  old term for “edema,” an abnormal accumulation of fluid in intercellular spaces of the body


Citation:  July 25, 1862 List of soldiers discharged; 1st MN Infantry, Hospital Reports, 1861-1863; p. 133. Minnesota: Adjutant General. Records. Minnesota Historical Society. State Archives.

(Photo) Citation:
Title:  Henry W. Lindergreen
Location no. por 21103 r1

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Itasca State Park sign

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

Lake Itasca State Park sign

Monument used at Itasca State Park between 1975 and 1988 to mark the source of the Mississippi River at the outlet of Lake Itasca in Minnesota.  The monument consists of a partial tree trunk painted brown with a flat rectangular surface cut out on one side.  Text on the monument reads,

Here 1475 ft. above the ocean the mighty Mississippi begins to flow on its winding way 2552 miles to the Gulf of Mexico.

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Letter regarding the 5th Regiment and Officer’s Hat

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

Letter from Adjutant General L. Thomas to Governor Ramsey ordering the companies of the 5th Regiment currently stationed at area forts to join the rest of the 5th Regiment in the field.

“Adjutant General’s Office – Washington D.C. July 24/62
His Excellency The Governor of Minnesota, St. Paul.
Sir: You are hereby authorized by the Secretary of War to relieve the Companies of the 5th regiment of Volunteers from your state, now on duty at Forts Ridgley, Ripley and Alexandria and to send them to join the other companies of the regiment in the field. To replace these troops you will please call out three independent Companies of Infantry to garrison the said Forts and for all other Military service within the state and the Territory of Dakotah. The aforesaid service will be special and the troops in question will not be ordered beyond the state or Territory named.
I have the honor to be, Sir,
Very respectfully, Your Obd’t Servant
L. Thomas Adjutant General”

Citation: July 24, 1862 Letter from Adjutant General L. Thomas, Letters Received–AGO-QMG. Minnesota: Governor: Ramsey. Records. Minnesota Historical Society. State Archives. Minnesota Historical Society.

Hat worn by Captain Gold T. Curtis
United States Army officer’s Model 1858 black felt dress hat, commonly known as a “Hardee” hat. The hat was worn during the Civil War by Captain Gold T. Curtis of the 5th Minnesota Regiment, Company K. Curtis served from April 30, 1862 until he died of dysentery in St. Louis, Missouri on July 24, 1862. The hat has a silk hatband and a plume of two black ostrich feathers with a brass button.

Learn More:

Citation: US Army officer’s Model 1858 uniform hat. 6844.2. Minnesota Historical Society.

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“What Our Soldiers Think,” “The Democracy and the War,” and “The Master Race,” St. Paul Press – July 23, 1862

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

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Speed Holman’s baby shoes

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Speed Holman's baby shoes

Shoes worn by aviator and stunt pilot Charles “Speed” Holman of Minneapolis during his babyhood and early childhood, 1898-1903.  The shoes have leather uppers and soles and close with metal buttons.   Holman died in an air show accident in Omaha, Nebraska in 1931.

For details, view the shoes in our online collections database.

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Railroad Inventories: On Track and On Line!

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Together, the Northern Pacific and Great Northern manuscript collections make the Minnesota Historical Society one of the great centers for railroad research in the entire nation. Acquisitioned in December 1968 and October 1972, the Northern Pacific and Great Northern railroads, respectively, became two of the largest collections that the Society houses. An astounding number of records have been processed and conserved in the intervening time, leading to thousands of boxes, volumes, and drawings being made accessible for research purposes.

The availability of inventories for these collections has, until recently, only been available in the Society’s reading room, but now you can explore the multitude of records on line! Documenting all facets of the railroads’ development and the communities they served, these finding aids allow for more convenient browsing, faster searching, and the discovery of related materials that may have been overlooked before.

That’s right! Minneapolis to Minot, Grand Forks to Great Falls, and Sand Point to Seattle, all stops along the railroad to research are now available on line. Travel the rails to Glacier and Yellowstone national parks, finagle your way through financial records, peruse photographs, consider correspondence, muse over maps, delve into drawings, bring blueprints to bear, and inspect indexes. We’re not just blowing steam here, take a look for yourself, and come explore the history of the Great Northern and Northern Pacific railroads:

Great Northern: http://www.mnhs.org/library/findaids/00901.xml

Northern Pacific: http://www.mnhs.org/library/findaids/01010.xml

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Letter from Hale to parents detailing surrender at Mufreesboro – July 22, 1862

Sunday, July 22nd, 2012

William D. Hale writes to his parents, detailing surrender of the Third Minnesota Volunteer Regiment at Murfreesboro and subsequent events.

“Nashville Tenn. July 22
Dear Folks at Home, […] You can have no idea of the awful misfortune that has fallen upon us, A noble body of men has been most basely surrendered, and the splendid name we have so long borne is utterly ruined.  And at this moment, while this city is threatened with attack at any moment 1,200 well drilled – strong men are chafing in their inability to assist in protecting so important a point, and must stand idly by, listening to the roar of cannon and rattle of musketry and perhaps see the old flag again torn from the capitol of Tennessee. Our position is by no means without danger, at this moment in case of attack we should be between two fires and also are near the Penitentiary where certain gentlemen of Nashville are continuing their theological studies, and the release of whom will be early attempted.
[…] I was arroused from sound sleep on the morning of the 13th by the distant dull irregular & rapid discharge of fire arms, springing to my elbow at the same instant with my fellow we listened, became satisfied that something was awry & sprang up & dressed quickly, laid a wager of Ice Cream on the chance for a fight – I for it – and rushed out to assist in alarming the camp, which was by this time in great excitement.  I was cool & pleased, put on my dirty shirt that I might exchange for a clean one on returning.  A few days later regretting the philosophy.  Our Colonel was excited, but in no degree to alarm us. While the companies were forming, a vidette rode in at full gallop with the information that the town was full of rebels & the 9th Mich. being cut to pieces.  We fell rapidly into line.  Now see the account forwarded with this and consider your boy as quietly watching the progress of events in his place in rear of the left wing ready at a moment to discharge his duties as aid in carrying commands to the left. […]”

See full transcription here.

View whole letter: 1862-07-22_combined

Citation: July 22, 1862 Letter from William D. Hale to folks at home, July 22, 1862. William D. Hale and family papers, 1819-1914. Minnesota Historical Society. [Reserve 109]

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Letter from Goddard to mother describing poor quality of clothes – July 21, 1862

Saturday, July 21st, 2012

Letter from Private Charles Goddard of the 1st Minnesota Regiment to his mother, Catherine Smith, from Harrison’s Landing, Virginia, describing the prices and quality of government clothing .

“Near Harrisons Landing
Va July 2[1]/62
Dear Mother I wrote a few lines to you a day or two ago and told you in my letter I thought we would be paid off in a few days. This morning we wer paid and what was due the government for clothes over the amount allowed us[,] which is $45.00 a year[,] was deducted from our whole amount and the remainder paid to us[.] I did not begin to be in debt to the Government for clothes as much as some of our boys[.] I paid $3.85[.] Ely paid all of his wages but $3.00 and one Corporal in our Company paid all but 4 cts[.] that was all that was left[,] and that he owes the Sutler, and $12.00 more which he could not pay of cours[.] I will tell you how we came to be so much in debt[.] when we was at Fort Snelling they issued clothing to us at Government prices that wer State clothes and the clothes would not last a person over night hardly. this is whare they got the start of us, and we come out in debt. Mother I could send you two or three dollars more but I am afraid I might get sick and thare is whare a fellow needs a little money to get such things as he needs and besids[,] it costs so much more here than it dose at Winona that I have to save so much more. I am well and so is all of the boys[.] Stebbins is prety near well[.]
I am just as healthy as I possably could be
Give my best respects to all of my Friends CM Smith
CE Goddard
Love to Brother Orren F Smith
Write me as soon as you get this so I may know that it is home all strait
You will find $10.00 enclosed”

Citation: July 2[1], 1862 Letter from Charles Goddard to his mother, Correspondence 1853-1862. Smith, Orrin Fruit and Family Papers, 1829-1932. Minnesota Historical Society.

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Toastmaster

Friday, July 20th, 2012

Toastmaster

Toastmaster toaster invented by Charles P. Strite and manufactured by the Waters-Genter Company of Minneapolis circa 1921. The Toastmaster was the world’s first automatic, pop-up electric toaster that could heat both sides of a slice of bread simultaneously, eliminating the need for manual flipping.  The two side levers allowed users to submerge the bread and initiate the heating process, as well as to set the toasting time according to personal taste.

Learn more:

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An Ounce of Preservation: A Guide to the Care of Papers and Photographs