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Marcell Ranger Station

Built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) between 1934 and 1935, the Marcell Ranger Station exemplifies the core principles of the National Park Service's architectural philosophy: minimalist construction and use of native materials.

Merchants National Bank, Winona

It is the rare financial institution that offers patrons an awe-inspiring architectural experience along with check-writing privileges. The Merchants National Bank in Winona, designed in 1911-1912 by the Minneapolis firm of Purcell, Feick and Elmslie, is one such edifice.

Mickey's Diner

Mickey Crimmons and Bert Mattson opened Mickey's Diner, located at 36 West Seventh Street in downtown St. Paul, in 1939. Such diners had gained popularity early in the twentieth century as inexpensive, often all-night, eateries. Built to resemble a rail car, Mickey's was particularly notable for its unique look. Its unusual architecture made it a local landmark, and earned it a place on the National Register of Historic Places.

Minnesota Building

Built in 1929 at Forty-Sixth East Fourth Street, the Minnesota Building represents a turning point in the economic history of downtown St. Paul and the architectural history of the entire Twin Cities area.

Minnesota Machinery Museum

When Hanley Falls School closed in the late 1970s, a few local residents saw an opportunity. Committed to sharing the history of their community, they transformed the white, two-story building on the town square into the Minnesota Machinery Museum. Since 1980, the museum has collected vintage farm equipment and created exhibits celebrating the history and agricultural tradition of Yellow Medicine County.

Orville P. and Sarah Chubb House

Built in 1867, the Chubb House is the oldest residence standing in Fairmont, and the only of the town's houses known to have been built with brick from Fairmont's first brickyard. It was the home of prominent homesteader Orville Chubb, who was the community's first physician. The house is an example of a property associated with the early Yankee American development of southern Minnesota town sites.

Paisley Park Studios

Home to many historically significant people and places, Carver County's possibly best-known are recording artist Prince and his Paisley Park Studios. Located in what were Chanhassen cornfields, the site was a key location in Minnesota's music industry. In its heyday, it drew artists and musicians from around the world. Though no longer in business, it still draws the eye of travelers along Highway 5 in Chanhassen.

Pillsbury Hall, University of Minnesota

Designed by Leroy Buffington and Harvey Ellis in the Richardsonian Romanesque style, Pillsbury Hall at the University of Minnesota opened in 1889 and is part of the National Register-listed Old Campus Historic District.

Prospect Park Water Tower, Minneapolis

Erected in 1913 on Tower Hill, one of the highest elevations in Minneapolis, the Prospect Park Water Tower was built to increase water pressure in the area and thereby enhance firefighting efforts. Familiarly known as "The Witch's Hat," it has become the neighborhood's architectural mascot not for its function but for its singularity.

Rochester State Hospital

Rochester State Hospital opened on January 1, 1879, as Minnesota’s second hospital for the insane. It served as part of Minnesota’s state hospital system until 1982, when changing trends in treatment for the mentally ill and lack of funding led to its closure.

Soo Line-First National Bank, Minneapolis

When it opened at the corner of Marquette Avenue and Fifth Street in 1915, the Soo Line-First National Bank Building was the tallest skyscraper in Minneapolis and also among the most elegant.

Southdale Center

Donald Dayton, head of Minneapolis-based Dayton's department stores, teamed up with designer Victor Gruen to create a comfortable, convenient setting for Minnesota shoppers. In 1952, Dayton and Gruen unveiled their plans for Southdale, the nation's first enclosed, weatherproofed mall.

St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral, Minneapolis

St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral was completed in 1906. It is the home church of a small community of Rusyns (also called Ruthenians or Carpatho-Ruthenians) who immigrated to Minneapolis from the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the late nineteenth century.

St. Paul City Hall and Ramsey County Courthouse

Ramsey County's third courthouse, which opened in 1932, is a treasure trove of wood, stone, sculpture, and art-deco style.

St. Paul Union Depot

The St Paul Union Depot Company was incorporated in 1879 by the railroads serving St. Paul. The company was created for the purpose of building and operating a single, jointly owned railroad passenger terminal. The first depot opened in 1881. It was destroyed by fire in 1884 and then rebuilt. The depot received an addition in a 1900-1901 remodeling project.

Stone Arch Bridge, Minneapolis

Built over the course of twenty-two months in 1882 and 1883, the Stone Arch Bridge across the Mississippi River in Minneapolis is a feat of engineering and a reminder of the importance of rail traffic in the late nineteenth century.

How Architecture Has Shaped the State

Three Thousand Years of Building in Minnesota

Expert Essay: Architectural historian Larry Millett, author of Lost Twin Cities and numerous other books, offers a colorful tour of notable Minnesota buildings and building styles, from American Indian burial mounds to Beaux Arts monuments and suburban big boxes.

West Hotel, Minneapolis

In 1884, the young city of Minneapolis got its first world-class hotel, the West Hotel. It was a match for the growing aspirations of the city, which until then had been served primarily by the Nicollet House, founded in 1857, before Minnesota was a state.

Wigington, Clarence (1883–1967)

Clarence Wigington, the nation’s first African American municipal architect, served as lead architect in over ninety St. Paul city projects. His legacy in brick and stone has lasted well into the twenty-first century. He designed both the enduring (schools, fire stations, park buildings) and the ephemeral (five Winter Carnival ice palaces).

Winona Masonic Temple

Built in 1909, the Winona Masonic Temple with its large public ballroom and other meeting rooms was an important center of social and civic activity in the city. It continues to serve Winona in the twenty-first century.