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.

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse, Windom. Photograph by Wikimedia Commons user Jatakuck, September 13, 2012. Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0.

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse, Windom. Photograph by Clifford M. Renshaw, 1972.

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse, Windom, ca. 1940.

Northwest view of Cottonwood County Courthouse

Northwest view of Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse, Windom, Minnesota, ca. 1925.

Side View of Cottonwood County Courthouse

Side View of Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse, Windom, Minnesota. Photograph by Moen Photo Service, ca. 1925.

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse

Cottonwood County Courthouse, Windom. Photograph by Wikimedia Commons user McGhiever, July 2, 2014. Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0.

Cottonwood County Courthouse

The Cottonwood County Courthouse, completed in 1905 and listed on the National Register of Historical Places in 1977, is a source of beauty and pride for the residents of Cottonwood County.

Photograph of sugaring spoon

Sugaring spoon

Spoon with burnt decoration on handle used for maple sugaring, ca. 1900–1950.

Tripp, Alice Raatama (1918‒2014)

A self-proclaimed “jumper-inner,” Alice Tripp made her mark as a grassroots activist and self-taught farmer. She was a key leader of a movement opposing the CU Powerline, which began construction on western Minnesota farmland in the early 1970s. Tripp went on to steer a surprisingly successful gubernatorial campaign, and even briefly tried her luck in the 1980 presidential election.

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