Black and white photograph of Virginia Piper in Jay Cooke State Park after her rescue by the FBI. Photographed by the FBI on July 29, 1972. Used with the permission of Harry Piper III.

Virginia Piper

Virginia Piper in Jay Cooke State Park after her rescue by the FBI. Photographed by the FBI on July 29, 1972. Used with the permission of Harry Piper III.

Kidnapping of Virginia Piper

On July 27, 1972, two armed, masked men walked into the Orono home of Virginia Lewis Piper and walked out with the forty-nine-year-old woman handcuffed and blindfolded. The next day, her husband, Harry C. Piper Jr., a prominent Twin Cities investment banker, personally delivered a $1 million ransom to the unidentified kidnappers. Four decades later, no one has served a day of prison time for the crime. Except for about four thousand dollars in scattered twenty-dollar bills, the Pipers’ million-dollar ransom has not been recovered.

Black and white photograph of a Red Cross nurse, and likely Motor Corps officer, 1918. The car has the Red Cross symbol on the hood and was likely part of the Minnesota Motor Corps.

Red Cross nurse and officer

A Red Cross nurse, and likely Motor Corps officer, 1918. The car has the Red Cross symbol on the hood and was likely part of the Minnesota Motor Corps.

Black and white photograph of members of the Red Cross Volunteer Motor Service, 1918.

Red Cross Volunteer Motor Service

Members of the Red Cross Volunteer Motor Service, 1918.

Black and white photograph of members of the St. Paul Chapter of the Red Cross, Motor Corps, 1918.

Members of St. Paul Chapter of Red Cross, Motor Corps

Members of the St. Paul Chapter of the Red Cross, Motor Corps, 1918.

Black and white photograph of Red Cross Motor Corps truck, St. Paul, 1918.

Red Cross Motor Corps truck

Red Cross Motor Corps truck, St. Paul, 1918.

Black and white photograph of the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens, c.1950.

Betty Crocker Test Kitchens

Betty Crocker Test Kitchens, c.1950.

Color portraits of Betty Crocker, 1936–1981.

Betty Crocker through the years

Portraits of Betty Crocker, 1936–1981. Photograph by the Cartwheel Company.

MN90: WCCO - How Betty Crocker Became a Good Neighbor

WCCO Radio has been around for decades, but the station has changed a lot since its start. MN90 Producer Andi McDaniel explains.

MN90: The Invention of Betty Crocker

Betty Crocker has it all. She’s wholesome, pretty, and bakes a “perfect cake every time.” Pretty impressive for a woman who doesn’t actually exist. MN90 Producer Andi McDaniel finds out how Gold Medal Flour created a persona that still charms homemakers today.

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