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Wheat harvest at G.S. Barnes and Company farm

Wheat harvest at G.S. Barnes and Company farm

Wheat harvest at G.S. Barnes and Company farm in Glyndon (Clay County), c.1878.

Bruns and Finkle general store, Moorhead

Bruns and Finkle general store, Moorhead. Stereograph, c.1880.

Bruns and Finkle Grain Elevator, Moorhead

In 1878, Red River Valley businessmen Henry A. Bruns and Henry G. Finkle built the first steam-powered grain elevator in the United States. In its first harvest season, the grain elevator handled almost 250,000 bushels of wheat from more than 5,000 wagons.

Minnesota locusts of the 1870s

Minnesota locusts of the 1870s

Minnesota locusts of the seventies, c.1870s. Photograph by Jacoby's Art Gallery.

Grangers versus Grasshoppers

Grangers versus Grasshoppers

"Grangers versus Grasshoppers, or the irrepressible conflict," carte-de-visite, c.1880.

Locust Egg Map of Minnesota, 1877

Locust Egg Map of Minnesota, 1877

Locust egg map of Minnesota, 1877. Showing the areas where eggs were deposited by the Rocky Mountain locust in 1873, 1874, 1875, and 1876. Author: Geological and Natural History Survey of Minnesota.

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.

Grasshopper Plagues, 1873–1877

On June 12, 1873, farmers in southwestern Minnesota saw what looked like a snowstorm coming towards their fields from the west. What seemed to be snowflakes were in fact grasshoppers. In a matter of hours, knee-high fields of grass and wheat were eaten to the ground by hungry hoppers.

Aerial view, Clarks Grove

Aerial view, Clarks Grove

Aerial view of Clarks Grove, 1972. Photograph by Vincent H. Mart. Clarks Grove became a village because of the business that the creamery attracted.

Dairy Hall, farm campus, St. Paul

Dairy Hall, farm campus, St. Paul

Dairy Hall, University of Minnesota farm campus, St. Paul, c.1910.

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