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This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1921

Patrick Des Jarlait is born on the Red Lake Reservation. He would paint colorful, stylized images of Ojibwe traditional life.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1922

A nationwide walkout by railroad shop craft and other employees includes 8,000 workers in the Twin Cities. The strike ends in defeat for the workers, with scab labor permanently replacing many of them, but the new Farmer-Labor Party's assistance during the strike encourages the workers' support of the party in later elections, making the Farmer-Labor Party, rather than the Democratic Party, the principal opposition party in Minnesota for many years.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1923

Twin City Savings and Loan Association is chartered, a $7 million institution that would assist thousands of area families in becoming homeowners.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1924

Six hundred women attend a Women's Safe Driver Automobile School at the YWCA, sponsored by the St. Paul Pioneer Press , the St. Paul Association Safety Division, and the Dunwoody Institute.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1926

Sauk Centre's Sinclair Lewis declines the Pulitzer Prize for the novel Arrowsmith , saying that awards inhibit creativity and make writers lazy. He would, however, feel differently a few years later.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1927

Harper and Brothers publishes the first English edition of Ole E. Rolvaag's Giants in the Earth , a novel of Norwegian settlement on the Great Plains. Rolvaag, a professor at St. Olaf College, wrote the original text in Norwegian.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1929

The first celebration of Kolacky Day in Montgomery occurs. A kolacky is a Czechoslovakian pastry filled with fruit. At first the festival was only a day long, but in 1975 the celebration was scheduled for late July and extended into Kolacky Days, complete with music, dancing, art displays, and a parade.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1931

The Interstate Bridge in Stillwater opens, replacing a wooden one built in 1876.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1933

Prompted by Governor Floyd B. Olson, the legislature passes an emergency law stopping farm foreclosure sales. The Great Depression and the dust bowl had hurt farmers throughout the nation, and they had responded to foreclosures by organizing the Farmers' Holiday, which attempted to stop the sale of farm products until prices rose. Willmar's John Bosch, who revered the nonviolent ideas of Mohandas Gandhi, led the state's Farmers' Holiday Movement.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1933

Wendell R. Anderson is born in St. Paul. A member of the silver medal-winning 1956 U.S. Olympic ice hockey team, a lawyer, and a former legislator (in both House and Senate), he would serve as governor from 1971 to 1976. After helping to establish a firmer control on state finances through the "Minnesota Miracle" fiscal reforms of 1971, Anderson would end his career as an elected official by appointing himself to fill Walter F. Mondale's U.S. Senate seat following Mondale's election as vice president of the United States in November 1976.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1941

Workers begin dismantling the Duluth and Northeastern Railroad, the last logging line to operate in Minnesota.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1941

Against a background of war in Europe and bitter pro- and anti-union activity in the Twin Cities, eighteen members of the Socialist Workers Party are found guilty in Minneapolis on a count of conspiring to undermine the loyalty of U.S. military forces and of publishing material advocating the overthrow of the government. Vincent R. Dunne, a leader in Teamsters Local 544, and the other defendants are, however, found not guilty on a count of seditious conspiracy to overthrow the government by force. Five more defendants, also party members, are acquitted on both counts.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1946

Author Tim O'Brien is born in Austin. His novel of the Vietnam War, Going After Cacciato, would win the National Book Award in 1979.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1969

The Coast Guard closes Split Rock Lighthouse after fifty-nine years of service. It becomes a state park the following year.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1974

The Raptor Center at the University of Minnesota opens. The facility treats injured birds of prey and helps to rehabilitate them for release into the wild.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1976

The first issue of the Circle newsletter is published by the Minneapolis American Indian Center. Containing stories about the lives and values of American Indians in the metro area, the newsletter would become a newspaper in March 1980 with a grant from the Dayton Hudson Foundation.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1976

St. Paul's Frank Boyd Park is dedicated to a "fighter for his class, his race, and his union." Born in Kansas, Boyd moved to Minnesota in 1904 and joined the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters Union in 1925, rising to secretary-treasurer in the organization. Active in DFL politics, he was one of the first two African Americans to cast votes in the Electoral College, in 1944. He died on May 2, 1962.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1979

Adventurer Gerry Spiess departs from Chesapeake Bay in his ten-foot sailboat Yankee Girl , built in his White Bear Lake garage in 1977. After a solo voyage across the Atlantic, Spiess arrives in Falmouth, England, on July 24, 1979.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1982

Clement Haupers dies in St. Paul, in the same Ramsey Hill house in which he was born in 1900. Known for developing the Minnesota State Fair art show into a major exhibition of local work, he also led the Works Progress Administration's Federal Art Project in Minnesota. Throughout his career, Haupers insisted that artists should support themselves without government grants. In this vein, when asked to give art students a lecture on how to survive financially, Haupers's response was "Sure, that'll be $150."

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1989

Duluth holds its first Bayfront Blues Festival. Originally a small, one-day regional event, it has grown into one of the major blues festivals in the country, attracting fans from all over the world, hosting over 200 blues performers of national and regional acclaim, and growing in attendance from about 1,000 the first year to nearly 60,000 over a three-day period in 1998.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1992

The MinnesotaCare health program, benefiting uninsured low-income Minnesota residents, goes into effect. MinnesotaCare is financed by state tax dollars, provider taxes, and premiums paid by enrollees. According to the Institute for Southern Studies' "Gold and Green 2000" report, Minnesota boasts the lowest number of people without health insurance in the country.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 1, 1994

"Runaway Train" by the Minneapolis group Soul Asylum wins a Grammy for best rock song.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 10, 1763

In the treaty ending the French and Indian War, France transfers to Britain the territory that would become Minnesota.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 10, 1804

The Upper Louisiana Territory, including present-day Minnesota west of the Mississippi River, is formally transferred from France to the United States in a ceremony in St. Louis.

This Day in Minnesota History

January 10, 1806

Lieutenant Zebulon M. Pike, exploring the Upper Mississippi territory included in the recent Louisiana Purchase, arrives at the North West Company post on Leech Lake. Incensed that the British Union Jack still flies there, he orders it shot down and replaced with the Stars and Stripes. Pike was something of an ingrate, however, as he enjoyed the hospitality of the post both before and after the incident. British fur posts remain in the region until the end of the War of 1812.

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