Twin Cities = Mpls/St Paul (1886)

Tom Kysilko pds at VISI.COM
Sat Apr 12 16:19:59 UTC 2003

Two years ago, James A. Landau asked:
 >Does anybody know when Minneapolis and St. Paul first used the designation
 >"Twin Cities"?

At that time, the earliest I could find in the UMich Making of America
database was 1891 for Mpls/St Paul, with references to other pairs of
cities going back to 1858.  I suggested that the St. Paul Pioneer Press
might be fruitful.

Two days recently at the Minnesota Historical Society Library dashed that
hope, and gave me renewed admiration for the kind of thing Barry does.  An
evenings work got me through only three months of the SPPP on microfilm,
and that was with a considerable amount of skimming.  No Twin Cites in
12/88 - 2/89.

However, the R. L. Polk City Directory for St. Paul proved more helpful.

1888:  full page ad on p. 184.  "St. Paul & Duluth / Railroad / The
shortest Line in Distance to / Lake Superior / . . . / The "Limited" runs
daily, and consumes only five hours between the Twin Cities and Duluth,
making but three stops en route."  [The SP&D ads for 1879-1887 do not use
"Twin Cities".]

1886: alphabetical listing on p. 953.  "Twin Cities Street Improvement
Co.  George W Cross pres, Wm Crooks sec and treas, 44 Gilfillan blk."  [I
found no alphabetical listings for Twin Cities anything in 1879-1885

This date is surely beatable.  I would suggest 1872, the year Mpls annexed
the Village of St Anthony on the east side of the Mississippi, as a
terminus a quo.  Before then, if Twin Cities can be found in this region at
all, it is more likely to refer to Mpls/St Anthony.

   Tom Kysilko        Practical Data Services
   pds at       Saint Paul MN USA

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