Saint Paul, Minnesota

Saint Paul is the capital of Minnesota and one of the Twin Cities separated by Mississippi River. Born from the Pig’s Eye tavern in the 1830’s and named after Saint Paul the Apostle in 1841, this Minnesota Nice city of 300,000 is an exciting place to live or visit.

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1 Brief Overview of Saint Paul, Minnesota

Home of Native Americans for about 2,000 years, the area was purchased from the Sioux Nation by the United States in the 1805 Treaty of St. Peters (Pike’s Purchase). Fort Snelling was built in 1819. On the other side of the Mississippi River, bootlegger Pierre Parent established Pig’s Eye tavern for thirsty fur traders and soldiers. The growing settlement was also called Pig’s Eye until renamed Saint Paul in 1841. For less than a decade, St. Paul was the capital of the Minnesota Territory. In 1858, the city became the state capital when Minnesota was admitted to the union. Today, this sibling of Minneapolis – commonly referred to as the Twin Cities – is a thriving community of 300,000 residents. “The most livable city in America” boasts of Fortune 500 companies, abundant cultural venues and museums, excellent schools and stunning architecture like the Cathedral of Saint Paul.

239 Selby Ave, St Paul, MN 55102

2 Cathedral of Saint Paul in Saint Paul, Minnesota

A French priest named Lucien Galtier was the first Roman Catholic to build a chapel at Fort Snelling in 1840. The following year, he relocated across the Mississippi River and named the fledging settlement after Saint Paul the Apostle. About sixty years later, Archbishop John Ireland commissioned Emmanuel Louis Masqueray to design a grand cathedral to be placed on top of St. Anthony Hill overlooking the city. Construction was completed in 1915, one year after the archdiocese’s co-cathedral in Minneapolis – the Basilica of St. Mary – was finished by the same architect. The Cathedral of Saint Paul is one of the largest churches in the United States.

239 Selby Ave, St Paul, MN 55102

3 Josias R. King Statue in Saint Paul, Minnesota

On April 12, 1861, the first shots of the American Civil War were fired by the Confederates upon Fort Sumter in South Carolina. Minnesota Governor Alexander Ramsey quickly offered newly-inaugurated Abraham Lincoln support. Two days later, Josias Redgate King – a former resident of Washington D.C. and member of the St. Paul Pioneer Guard since 1857 – was the nation’s first to sign up as a Union soldier. More than 1,000 local men followed his lead, becoming the First Minnesota Volunteer Infantry Regiment. Slightly more than 300 men returned home when the regiment was disbanded in 1864. King survived and posed for the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial in 1903. The 14 foot bronze sculpture by John Karl Daniels stands atop a 55 foot marble column at Summit Park.

Summit Park, 185 Summit Ave, St Paul, MN 55102

4 Minnesota History Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Shortly after Minnesota became a territory in 1849, its legislature established the Minnesota Historical Society. With a mission to preserve the state’s heritage, the MNHs has grown into a network of 26 historic sites, the state’s oldest publisher, an educator for children and adults, a manager of parks plus a curator of historic materials. Since 1992, their headquarters, archives, exhibits, library and 1.1 million artifacts are housed in the Minnesota History Center. The elegant façade is a blend of granite, limestone and marble.

345 W Kellogg Blvd, St Paul, MN 55102

5 James J. Hill House in Saint Paul, Minnesota

James J. Hill was a brilliant entrepreneur. Within decades of arriving in St. Paul as a teenager in 1860, he built monopolies in steamboat transportation, coal and banking. His greatest achievement began in 1879 when he bought the bankrupt St. Paul and Pacific Railroad. By 1893, the “Empire Builder” had created a transcontinental railroad. The Great Northern Railway stretched 1,700 miles from St. Paul to Seattle, Washington. He then added more routes headed east and south. At the time of his death in 1916, Hill’s net worth was about $2.5 billion in today’s value. His former home on Summit Avenue was worthy of a tycoon. The 36,000 square foot mansion has a Richardsonian Romanesque design. After the Hill family lived here from 1891 until 1925, the property was acquired by the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. Then it was purchased by the Minnesota Historical Society in 1978. They offer fascinating 75 minute tours every half hour.

240 Summit Ave, St Paul, MN 55102

6 Ramsey Professional Building in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Local architect Cass Gilbert is best remembered in St. Paul for designing the Minnesota State Capital. He gained national fame for designing two other capitals plus the Woolworth Building in New York and the United States Supreme Court building in Washington D.C. Often overlooked among his huge list of projects is the former German Bethlehem Presbyterian Church at the base of Ramey Hill. The church was finished in 1890 while Cass – then only 30 years old – was in partnership with James Knox Taylor. In 1916, it became the Gargoyle Club, an eatery and tavern for architects. Since the 1960s, the property has been a theatre and funeral home. Now this small gem of the Hill District is the Ramsey Professional Building. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

311 Ramsey St, St Paul, MN 55102

7 Victorian Architecture on Summit Avenue in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Grand mansions were built along Summit Avenue from 1859 through the 1920s. This 4.5 mile boulevard has the finest collection of Victorian homes in the United States. A handsome example is this Queen Anne structure built in 1900. This was the former Mrs. Porterfield’s Boarding House. During the summer of 1919, 22 year old author F. Scott Fitzgerald would walk from his parent’s home at 599 Summit to meet friends on this porch. He also edited his first novel “The Romantic Egotist” here, published the following year as “This Side of Paradise.”

513 Summit Ave, St Paul, MN 55102

8 Mitchell Hamline School of Law in Saint Paul, Minnesota

St. Paul College of Law was established in 1900. It merged with the Minneapolis-Minnesota College of Law in 1956. The new institution was named William Mitchell College of Law. Its namesake was William B. Mitchell, a Minnesota Supreme Court Associate Justice and the school’s first dean. The revered law school has produced a who’s who of Minnesota politicians, corporate attorneys and judges. Among the notable alumni was Warren E. Burger, Chief Justice of the United States from 1969 until 1986. In 2015, the school merged with Hamline University of Law. It is now called Mitchell Hamline School of Law. Approximately 1,000 students attend in pursuit of the Juris Doctor degree.

875 Summit Ave, St Paul, MN 55105

9 Minnesota State Capitol Building in Saint Paul, Minnesota

By copying St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, the marble, unsupported dome on the Minnesota State Capitol became the world’s second largest when finished in 1905. At the base of the dome’s ribs and columns is a stunning golden chariot called Quadriga. The horses represent water, earth, wind and fire. The ensemble was designed by Daniel French. He was also the sculptor for the Lincoln Memorial. Further down are six white marble statues symbolizing the virtues such as faith, hope and charity. The building contains 16 types of marble, local granite and limestone plus seven other types of stone. Minnesota became the 32nd state on May 11, 1858

75 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard., St Paul, MN 55155

10 Gilded Quadriga at Minnesota State Capitol in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Atop the south portico of the Minnesota State Capitol in Saint Paul is the gilded Quadriga or “The Progress of the State.” The horses represent earth, wind, fire and water. The women represent civilization yet individually they personify industry and agriculture. The man symbolizes prosperity. It was sculpted in 1906 by Daniel Chester French. He is best known for the Abraham Lincoln statue in the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C

75 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard., St Paul, MN 55155

11 Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda Dome in Saint Paul, Minnesota

The interior, decorative dome in the Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda in Saint Paul is sixty feet in diameter. It is just one of the beautiful elements designed by Cass Gilbert, a young Saint Paul architect. Based on this early success, he went on to design other state capitols and the U.S. Supreme Court. He also became a pioneer in building skyscrapers such as the Woolworth Building. That NYC landmark was the world’s tallest in 1913.

75 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard., St Paul, MN 55155

12 Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda Arch in Saint Paul, Minnesota

The Minnesota State Capitol architect, Cass Gilbert, was a perfectionist with stunning results for his home town of Saint Paul. The rotunda walls are veneered limestone from Kosota, Minnesota. The columns are Minnesota bronze granite and their capitals (top of columns) are a Lady Slipper motif, the state flower. The band of red stone is also local. Gilbert decorated the three floors of the rotunda with circles: a glass one in the floor, a circle of arches, a ring of balusters, ornamental ironwork that is round and a globe chandelier. The surrounding murals are called Civilization of the Northwest by Edward Simmons.

75 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard., St Paul, MN 55155

13 Liberty Bell Replica in Saint Paul, Minnesota

One of the United States most iconic symbols is the Liberty Bell. Cast in 1752 for the Pennsylvania State House and associated with the Declaration of Independence in 1776, the American treasure is displayed at Liberty Bell Center in Philadelphia. In 1950, the U. S. Department of the Treasury gifted a replica to each of the 48 states plus territories during a savings bond campaign. Bell number 9 is proudly displayed on a wooden yoke at the Veterans Service Building about two blocks from the Minnesota State Capitol seen in the background. The inscription Pass and Stow represent the original foundry workers John Pass and John Stow. The Christoph Paccard Bell Foundry cast the bronze, 2,080 pound replicas.

W 12th St, St Paul, MN 55155

14 Peace Officers Memorial in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Peace Officers Memorial was erected at the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport in 1977 and later moved to the Minnesota State Capitol grounds. It is tribute to the nearly 300 police officers killed in action since 1881. This is the locale for National Law Enforcement Day every May 15, a 24-hour ceremony. The inscription on the granite block is a Bible quote from Matthew 5:9: “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” The blue stripe represents the “thin blue line” navigated by law enforcement on a daily basis.

2 W 12th St, St Paul, MN 55155

15 Excel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota

One way Minnesotans embrace their long winters is with ice hockey. In 1967, the Minnesota North Stars became their first professional hockey team. After the franchise moved to Dallas in 1993, the state had to wait seven seasons before welcoming the Minnesota Wild. Since 2000, the National Hockey League team plays their home games at Xcel Energy Center in downtown St. Paul. The “X” also hosts high school tournaments, concerts and conventions. Named after a regional utility company, the sports arena is consistently rated high for its overall fan experience.

199 W Kellogg Blvd, St Paul, MN 55102

16 Church of the Assumption in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Bishop Joseph Cretin founded Church of the Assumption in 1856 to serve early German immigrants to St. Paul. It seems fitting its second church built by Bavarian architect Joseph Reidel would be modeled after the Romanesque Revival design of Ludwigskirche in Munich. The Catholic church was dedicated in 1874. Within the twin spires are several bells including an original one from the mid-19th century. Assumption Catholic Church is located in the heart of downtown and is part of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.

51 7th St W, St Paul, MN 55102

17 Mickey’s Diner in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Since Mickey Crimmons and Bert Mattson opened their diner in 1939, the family-run business has served customers every hour of every day. Swing open the creaking door of this Art Deco dining car. Become awash in grease aromas as you shimmy down the narrow corridor. Hop onto a round stool and order an all-day hearty breakfast with thick coffee or a classic sandwich with thick malt. Savor the gastric and throwback experience. Wipe the grease from your chin that your tongue can’t reach. When you leave, you will know why the iconic Mickey’s Diner is listed by the National Register of Historic Places.

36 7th St W, St Paul, MN 55102

18 Wells Fargo Place in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Compared to most large metros, St. Paul’s skyline is modest with only 15 high-rises over 300 feet. None qualify as a skyscraper. Wells Fargo Place is the tallest at 471 feet with 37 floors. The tower is clad in Finnish granite. The office complex was called the Minnesota World Trade Center when it opened in 1987. Similar to most buildings in downtown St. Paul, Wells Fargo Place is connected to the skywalk. This system of elevated, temperature-controlled walkways allows Minnesotans to travel coat-free even during cold winter days.

30 E 7th St, St Paul, MN 55101

19 Landmark Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota

The center jewel of Rice Park in downtown St. Paul is Landmark Center. This was originally the Federal Court House and Post Office. The magnificent façade of pink granite ashlar accented with green conical turrets, a red tile roof and center clock tower was designed by Willoughby J. Edbrooke. When he died before the project was completed in 1902, local architect Cass Glibert became the supervisor while simultaneously working on the Minnesota State Capitol. The style is Richardsonian Romanesque. It was popularized in the mid-19th century by the short yet illustrious career of Boston architect Henry Hobson Richardson. After this magnificent structure was renovated in the 1970s, it reopened in 1978 as Landmark Center. Tenants include cultural groups and art galleries. Free public tours are available of this U.S. National Register of Historic Places site.

75 W 5th St, St Paul, MN 55102

20 Ordway Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Lucius Pond Ordway was born in New York and moved to St. Paul after graduating from college in 1883. He took a sales job at a tool supplier and within a decade owned the company. Following a merger in 1893, he created and then built Crane & Ordway into a major steam engine parts manufacturer. In 1904, his best investment was salvaging a mining company in Two Harbors, Minnesota. Ordway became president and then moved the fledging firm to St. Paul five years later. By 1946, the Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company was listed on the New York Stock Exchange. In 1980, granddaughter Sally Ordway leveraged part of her 3M inheritance by donating $7.5 million – a sum matched by other Ordway family members – to build the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts along Rice Park. The Music Theater and Concert Hall stages musicals, plays, concerts and dance. It is also home to the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and Minnesota Opera.

345 Washington St, St Paul, MN 55102

21 The Saint Paul Hotel in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Across Rice Park from the Ordway Center is another investment by Lucius Pond Ordway. In 1908, the wealthy St. Paulite purchased and demolished the former Windsor Hotel. Ordway then hired the local firm of Reed and Stem – the architects of New York’s Grand Central Terminal – to build a luxury replacement. On opening night in 1910, “St. Paul’s Million-dollar Hotel” welcomed the city’s elite including James J. Hill and John Ireland, archbishop of St. Paul. You can also feel like a million dollars when driving up to this English cottage garden, being greeted by an impeccably-dressed doorman and walking through the door of this Italian Renaissance façade. The Saint Paul Hotel is unsurpassed in premier accommodations, fine dining and extemporary service.

350 Market St, St Paul, MN 55102

22 James J. Hill Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota

James J. Hill was one of the most prominent and wealthy businessmen in St. Paul during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Before he died in 1916, Hill dreamed of building a public library. He purchased land in the core of St. Paul and hired New York architect Electus D. Litchfield. Litchfield created an Italian Renaissance design faced with pink marble and sandstone columns. Hill’s wife and children spearheaded the project’s completion. In 1921, James J. Hill Reference Library opened its doors facing Rice Park. The collection now includes 200,000 business resources plus regional historical records from the 19th through early 21st centuries. In 2013, the business reference library was renamed James J. Hill Center.

80 W 4th St, St Paul, MN 55102

23 CHS Field in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Minnesota is fortunate to have a professional team in almost every sport. In addition to the Minnesota Twins in Minneapolis – a Major League Baseball club – fans of America’s pastime also enjoy cheering for the St. Paul Saints and watching the wild antics between innings. When this American Association club was founded in 1993, they played their home games at Midway Stadium. On May 18, 2015, they threw their first pitch at CHS Field in the Lowertown District of St. Paul. The field’s namesake is CHS Inc., a Minnesota-based agricultural cooperative among the Fortune 100 companies.

360 N Broadway St, St Paul, MN 55101

24 Pioneer Building in Saint Paul, Minnesota

During the late 19th century, Saint Paulites read two newspapers: the Minnesota Pioneer (begun in 1849) and the Saint Paul Dispatch (founded in 1868). They consolidated into one daily paper – the St. Paul Pioneer Press – in 1985. Nearly one hundred years earlier, the Dispatch Printing Company moved into their new headquarters on North Robert Street. In 1889, this was the city’s tallest building. The lower level is white masonry decorated with fluted pilasters and an entrance archway. The façade of the remaining 15 floors are dark red brick in a Romanesque Revival style by Chicago architect Solon Spencer Beman. The structure is encircled by the Endicott Building designed by Cass Gilbert. The complex is often called the Pioneer-Endicott Buildings. The historic property is now the Pioneer Endicott apartments.

332 North Robert St, St Paul, MN 55101

25 First National Bank Building in Saint Paul, Minnesota

First National Bank of St. Paul was formed in 1864. In 1931, after acquiring Merchants Bank in the East Tower, the financial company built the adjacent West Tower. At 417 feet, the Art Deco high-rise was St. Paul’s tallest until 1986. More importantly, in 1936, the bank affixed a 50 foot, 1st neon sign onto a 100 foot steel tower. The bank’s name has long since disappeared in a series of mergers resulting in U. S. Bank. But the iconic sign continues to brighten the evening sky over downtown St. Paul. In 2017, it was announced part of the First National Bank Building was being converted from offices into apartments.

332 Minnesota St, St Paul, MN 55101

26 Robert Street Bridge in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Four bridges span the Mississippi River leading into downtown St. Paul. The oldest is the Robert Street Bridge. Constructed in 1926, the 1,534 concrete span is unusually complex. It features three types of arches: barrel, rib and rainbow. It was designed to accommodate car, foot, railroad and ship traffic. The street and bridge were named after Louis Roberts, a French-Canadian fur trader. He was also an early riverboat captain in St. Paul during the 1850s. Relative to the position of the current bridge, his home was on the cliff at the bridge terminus and his Lower Landing trading post was located on the lower right.

Robert St N & S Robert St, St Paul, MN 55102

27 Harriet Island Regional Park in Saint Paul, Minnesota

After German-born Justus Ohage came to St. Paul in 1881, the surgeon became a University of Minnesota professor and then public health officer from 1899 until 1918. To foster better living, he acquired an island across the Mississippi from St. Paul and donated it for developing a park. Harriet Island was named after Harriet E. Bishop. She was St. Paul’s first school teacher when she arrived in 1847. Although technically no longer an island, Harriet Island Regional Park is a much loved waterfront greenspace with trails, playgrounds, picnic areas, a band shell and marvelous views of downtown St. Paul’s skyline.

151 W Water St, St Paul, MN 55107

28 Clarence W. Wigington Pavilion at Harriet Island in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Among the amenities at Harriet Island Regional Park is the Clarence W. Wigington Pavilion, a 5,000 square foot event venue. The recreational facility was called Harriet Island Pavilion when it opened in 1941. In 1998, it was renamed to honor Clarence Wigington. When he was hired as a draftsman in 1915, Wigington became the first African-American municipal architect in St. Paul and the country. By the end of his illustrious career in 1949, “Cap” had created 90 of St. Paul’s public buildings for schools, fire stations and parks plus the zoo and airport. 60 of his structures still stand. Four of them, including this pavilion, are protected as National Register of Historic Places.

200 Dr Justus Ohage Blvd, St Paul, MN 55107

29 Jonathan Padelford at Harriet Island in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Prior to the early 19th century, only Native American canoes and fur trader rowboats navigated the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers that converge at St. Paul. The Virginia was the first steamboat in 1823. By 1853, 235 riverboats moored at the Lower and Upper Landings in St. Paul. Since 2003, several tourist steamboats are docked across the river on Harriet Island at Padelford Landing. The most famous is the Jonathan Padelford. The 125 foot, 300 capacity sidewheeler was launched in 1969 by Captain William Bowell, founder of the Padelford Riverboat Company.

205 Dr Justus Ohage Blvd, St Paul, MN 55107

30 Como Lakeside Pavilion at Como Park in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Como Park offers free family fun across 300 acres in the heart of St. Paul. Generations have enjoyed the park since it was created in 1873 by Frederick Nussbaumer, the former Superintendent of Parks. Among its features are a zoo, golf course, rides and a conservatory. The Como Lakeside Pavilion hosts regular summer concerts plus a restaurant for snacks. Encircling it are picnic areas and walking paths.

1360 Lexington Pkwy N, St Paul, MN 55103

31 Como Lake at Como Park in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Among the state’s 10,000 lakes is this perennial favorite: Como Lake. Easy to access by car or bus, the 70.5 acres of scenic tranquility offers a delightful urban respite. Joggers, cyclists and walkers enjoy the 1.67 mile path. Anglers wet a line from the pier hoping to snag from a variety of fish. Or you can rent a paddleboat, paddleboard or canoe for a tour around the shoreline.

1360 Lexington Pkwy N, St Paul, MN 55103

32 Marjorie McNeely Conservatory at Como Park in Saint Paul, Minnesota

During a Minnesota winter – when the wind chill plummets and the snow mounts – a perfect escape is Marjorie McNeely Conservatory at Como Park. Under this Victorian-style glass dome are 60,000 feet of horticultural pleasure including orchids, bonsai trees, ferns and fountains. The wonderful fragrance of spring is available all year for free. The plants, flowers and trees at the conservatory have delighted Minnesotans since it opened to the design of Frederick Nussbaumer in 1915.

1225 Estabrook Dr, St Paul, MN 55103

33 Cafesjian’s Carousel at Como Park in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Who can resist climbing aboard one of 68 carved wooden horses then spinning around to the delightful tunes of a Wurlitzer band organ? Nobody! The story of this carousel began in 1914 when Austin MacFadden order number 33 from the Philadelphia Toboggan Company. It swirled around the Minnesota State Fair for nearly 75 years. In 1988, the merry-go-round was doomed to be auctioned off in pieces. Fortunately, it was saved by a non-profit group called Our Fair Carousel. The ride’s namesake is Gerard L. Cafesjian. His generous donation kept the volunteer-operated ride in Minnesota and found a new home at Como Park. Cafesjian was a former executive of West Publishing. His other philanthropy credits included creating two foundations plus an arts center in Yerevan, Armenia.

1245 Midway Pkwy, St Paul, MN 55103

34 Amusement Rides at Como Park in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Como Town Swing is one of 18 rides at Como Town, an amusement center within Como Park. Children love riding in the Kiddie Gran Prix, bumper cars, pony carts, tea cups and train. There are also several adventures for young daredevils plus heat-squelching water attractions. Ride tickets are reasonably priced by the day or for season passes yet there is no cost to enter. Also free are the endless smiles and giggles.

1301 Midway Pkwy, St Paul, MN 55103

35 Como Zoo Giraffes at Como Park in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Como Zoo has 25 animal habitats including sections for large cats, primates, bears and birds. An interactive highlight of the zoo is the Giraffe Feeding Station. Tentatively wave some lettuce over the railing of an elevated platform. Then watch as one of these giant yet gentle creatures lumber towards you and grabs the snack with its 18 inch tongue. Standing at an average height of 14 to 18 feet, reticulated giraffes like these are the world’s tallest mammals.

1225 Estabrook Dr, St Paul, MN 55103

36 Minnesota State Fair in Saint Paul Composite of 136 Photos

136 photos of the Minnesota State Fair in Saint Paul include iconic activities that happen for twelve days through Labor Day. “The Great Minnesota Get Together” attracts about 1.8 million, making it the second largest state fair in the U.S. It includes livestock competitions, shows, parades, beer gardens, art exhibits, plenty of rides, and almost any kind of food that is deep fried and then speared with a stick. That’s why I called this piece “So Much to See, Do and Eat.” There is no better way to end the summer than with a very high caloric and cholesterol intake at the fair.

1265 Snelling Ave N, St Paul, MN 55108

37 Sunset over the Midway at the Minnesota State Fair in St. Paul, Minnesota

The Minnesota State Fair in Saint Paul, Minnesota, is the second largest in the U.S. It may be mandatory that all 1.7 million people who attend the twelve-day event eat something that’s on a stick, is deep fired, and/or is laden with calories. The Midway offers 30 spinning, swirling and scary rides plus carnival games and more food. At sunset, the lights are dazzling.

1842 W Dan Patch Ave, St. Paul, MN 55113

38 Historic Schmidt Brewery in Saint Paul, Minnesota

In 1855, Christopher Stahlmann founded Cave Brewery. It became the state’s largest producer of beer until it was purchased by St. Paul Brewing in 1898. Two years later, it was sold to Jacob Schmidt. At the time, he was a brewmaster for competitor Theodore Hamm Brewing Company. Soon afterwards, the Jacob Schmidt Brewing Company built this plant with the now iconic sign along the elevated catwalk between the grain elevators and the crenellated tower. Unlike most liquor manufactures, Schmidt’s remained operational during prohibition selling near beers. After the twenty-first amendment was passed in 1993, the brewery blossomed. Schmidt Brewery was purchased by four successive companies starting in 1954. It closed in 2002. Since 2012, the property has become Schmidt Artist Lofts, a development of 250 apartments and townhouses.

900 7th St W, St Paul, MN 55102

39 Former William Banholzer Mansion in Saint Paul, Minnesota

German immigrants flocked to St. Paul from the 1840s through the 1870s. They brought with them a thirst for beer. By the end of the 19th century, the state had over 100 breweries. Of the twelve in St. Paul, one of the most successful was operated by William Banholzer. He and his father purchased the failing North Mississippi Company in 1871. Within a decade, William grew it into a huge brewery generating 12,000 barrels annually. He used his fortune to build this mansion in 1885 above his network of caves used to cool beer. Ironically, the French Second Empire style property was purchased in 1958 for a halfway house for recovering alcoholics. The Fellowship Club was started by the Hazelden Foundation, an addiction treatment center founded in Center City, Minnesota in 1949. In 2014, the non-profit rehabilitation group merged with the Betty Ford Center. In 2016, the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation built a huge St. Paul campus adjacent to the former William Banholzer Mansion.

680 Stewart Ave, St Paul, MN 55102

40 Boats Docked on Mississippi River in Saint Paul, Minnesota

There are over 800,000 boats registered in Minnesota. This is the second largest number among all 50 states and the highest per capita. Most watercraft are on lakes. Despite the state’s motto of “Land of 10,000 Lakes,’ there are actually 11,842 over 10 acres. Many summer-weekend captains prefer the rivers. As a result, you will see the riverbanks sprinkled with docks for pleasure boats such as the Watergate Marina on the Mississippi River.

2500 Crosby Farm Rd, St Paul, MN 55116

41 Betsey Northrup on Mississippi River in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Summer is a fleeting experience in Minnesota. So the state’s residents love spending any warm day on the water. An idyllic experience is floating on the Mississippi aboard the Betsey Northrup. The two-deck party barge is pushed by Ugh the Tug and owned by the Padelford Riverboat Company.

2500 Crosby Farm Rd, St Paul, MN 55116

42 Confluence of Two Rivers in Saint Paul, Minnesota

The Mississippi River flows between the Twin Cities. In the background on the left is downtown Minneapolis. On the right is Saint Paul. This photo was taken at Fort Snelling State Park looking west. Just east of this site is the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers. The Mdewakanton Dakota tribe called this spot Bdote Minisota. The same Native Americans gave the state its name. Minisota means “clear blue water.”

200 Tower Ave, St Paul, MN 55111

43 Fort Snelling Buildings near St. Paul, Minnesota

Fort Snelling was established in 1819 on a cliff overlooking the conflux of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers. The citadel’s namesake was the first commanding officer and architect, Colonel Josiah Snelling. It took until 1824 for the soldiers from the 5th Infantry Regiment to finalize the construction of the fortification’s buildings. This fort and other structures within the unorganized territory served various military roles until it was decommissioned in 1994. It is now a park managed by the Minnesota Historical Society.

200 Tower Ave, St Paul, MN 55111

44 Round Tower at Fort Snelling near St. Paul, Minnesota

This Round Tower was built at Fort Snelling in 1820, 38 years before Minnesota became a state. It is considered to be the state’s oldest remaining building. This frontier post was the epicenter for the future Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul plus neighboring towns. This pioneering role has earned the fortification two prestigious designations: U.S. National Historic Landmark and U.S. National Register of Historic Parks.

200 Tower Ave, St Paul, MN 55111

45 Soldiers Firing Muskets at Fort Snelling near St. Paul, Minnesota

One of the joys of visiting Fort Snelling near Saint Paul, Minnesota, is to see volunteers in period costumes reenact military drills every half hour. Here three soldiers fire muskets. Other activities include cannon demonstrations, fife and drum performances, infantry marches, and flag ceremonies. You can also meet historically dressed staff who are “working” in different buildings and learn what life was like in a pioneer fort during the early 19th century.

200 Tower Ave, St Paul, MN 55111

46 St. Peter’s Church in Mendota, Minnesota

In 1825, Alexis Bailly established an American Fur Company trading post on a bluff across the river from Fort Snelling. This trading station with Native Americans assumed the Dakota Indian name “Mdo-te” meaning “meeting of the waters” because it overlooked the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers. In 1842, Father Galtier arrived in Mendota and built a log chapel to serve mass to the French-Canadian traders. The Church of St. Peter was replaced with this humble limestone structure in 1853 by Father Augustin Ravoux. St. Peter’s is the oldest Catholic church building in the state.

1405 Sibley Memorial Hwy, St Paul, MN 55120