Steamboats Itasca and War Eagle at the St. Paul levee, 1859.

Steamboats

Steamboats Itasca and War Eagle at the St. Paul levee, 1859.

Painting showing a view of St. Paul, 1855.

View of St. Paul

Painting showing a view of St. Paul, 1855.

Watercolor painting of an interior view of Fort Snelling made c.1853.

Interior View, Fort Snelling

Watercolor painting of an interior view of Fort Snelling made c.1853.

Oil on canvas painting of Fort Snelling created c.1855.

Fort Snelling

Oil on canvas painting of Fort Snelling created c.1855.

Black and white photograph of St. Anthony Falls taken c.1860.

Falls of St. Anthony

Black and white photograph of St. Anthony Falls taken c.1860.

The Rock Island Excursion of 1854

On February 22, 1854, the Chicago and Rock Island Railroad completed the first rail line to connect the Mississippi River to the Atlantic Ocean. To promote that feat the company contacted notable East Coast citizens and journalists and invited them to ride their train to Rock Island. From there, the visitors took a steamboat trip up the Mississippi, stopping at St. Paul. The journalists, pleased with what they saw, wrote of the beauty and splendor of a region that many in the East thought was little more than a wilderness.

Map of the Northwest Angle and Lake of the Woods.

Map of the Northwest Angle and Lake of the Woods

Map of the Northwest Angle and Lake of the Woods. The map is reproduced in Minnesota’s Boundary with Canada by William E. Lass (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1980), 46.

Northwest end of Northwest Angle Inlet, Lake of the Woods

Photograph of the northwest end of Northwest Angle Inlet, Lake of the Woods. Photographed by William E. Lass on May 23, 1972.

Color photograph of monument marking the northwest point of Lake of the Woods on Rose Island.

Lake of the Woods boundary marker

Photograph of reference monument 44, Rose Island, Lake of the Woods. The monument marks the northwest point of Lake of the Woods on Rose Island. Photographed by William E. Lass on May 23, 1972.

Color photograph of a Northwest angle marker and author William E. Lass provides a sense of the marker's scale, 1972.

Northwest Angle marker

Photograph of William E. Lass at boundary monument 925, looking north to the northwest corner of Lake of the Woods. This is the northernmost marker on the meridian strip between Buffalo Bay and Northwest Angle Inlet. Photographed by William E. Lass on May 23, 1972.

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