MN90: A 19th Century Grasshopper Disaster

During the 1870s, grasshopper plagues made life miserable for Minnesota's farmers. The insects traveled in swarms so large they darkened the sky, destroying crops and farmers’ livelihoods along the way. Learn more about the government response to the crisis and the lasting damage that was left behind.

MN90: A Bomb of a Joke

When enterprising Wilford Fawcett came home to Robbinsdale, MN, after World War I, he thought it would be good business to publish the dirty jokes he heard in the trenches overseas. He called his magazine "Captain Billy’s Whiz Bang" and it became a huge success. MN90 producer Marisa Helms tells us Fawcett made a small fortune off of his bawdy humor magazine and went on to build a publishing empire of hobby magazines and comic books, including Captain Marvel.

MN90: A Hero for Hard Times

Minnesotans elected Floyd B. Olson as the state’s first Farmer-Labor party governor in 1930, during the height of the Great Depression. During this tough time, thousands of people across the country were out of work, dealing with bread lines, and losing their farms to foreclosure. MN90 producer Marisa Helms introduces us to Floyd B. Olson, who became the hero Minnesotans were hoping for.

MN90: A Socialist Opera House Brings Pride to the Finnish Immigrant Community

Finnish immigrants came to Minnesota’s Mesabi Iron Range to take jobs in the mines. Because working conditions were brutal, many went on strike 1916. The action cost them their jobs and the strikers were blacklisted. Producer Allison Herrera tells us about a special meeting place that elevated the community.

MN90: America's First Indoor Mall

MN90: America's First Indoor Mall

MN90: At home on the Iron Range – Restoring a Jewish legacy in Virginia, MN

MN90: At home on the Iron Range – Restoring a Jewish legacy in Virginia, MN

MN90: Dr. Martha Ripley, an Early Champion for Women's Rights

Martha Ripley was a nurse by training when she moved to Minneapolis with her husband in 1883. Her expertise in medical care and her commitment to the rights of some of the city's destitute young mothers led to her to open a hospital dedicated to their care. Allison Herrera tells us about her remarkable life.

MN90: F. Scott Fitzgerald — the voice of his generation

St. Paulite F. Scott Fitzgerald is considered one of America’s greatest authors. MN90 producer Marisa Helms speaks with Minnesota writer Patricia Hampl who says though Fitzgerald’s reputation was solidified in more glamorous places like New York and Europe, Fitzgerald always had a romance with the Midwest, and his Midwest was St. Paul.

MN90: George Bonga: Minnesota's First Fur Trader

Half black, half Ojibwe, George Bonga was the first person of African descent born in what was then the territory of Minnesota in 1802. He was a fur trader and a treaty translator that forged vital relationships with both Europeans and Native Americans. Allison Herrera tells us more about his important role in Minnesota history.

MN90: Home of the Grange

When Oliver Kelley began farming in Minnesota during the mid-1850s, he was frustrated by the low status of farmers and the isolation of rural life. So along with six others, he started an organization called the Grange, which as MN90 Producer Andi McDaniel explains, changed agrarian life in America by bringing farmers together to socialize and advocate for themselves. Includes an interview with Bob Quist of Oliver Kelley Farm.

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