Not so long ago but in another journalistic era I spent many hours enjoying the rich resources and incredible staff of Special Collections at Minneapolis Central Library. My quest was to learn and share the stories of the parks and neighborhoods of Northeast Minneapolis. (See attached)
In those days my key leads to park records were the MPRB website (https://www.minneapolisparks.org/about_us/history/) , the library’s “vertical file,” crammed with clippings, posters, letters, newsletters, and other mementoes of park history, the brief outline of MPRB posted on the Hennepin County Library website, the grand plan for the Grand Rounds (https://www.minneapolisparks.org/_asset/vkz2qm/grand_rounds_masterplan_1999.pdf) and David C. Smith’s essential guide to the park system: https://www.minneapolisparks.org/about_us/history/city_of_parks_book/
Both the Grand Rounds and my series of posts about the magnificent park system remain works in progress….
As I enjoy the sights and sounds of the city’s parks these summer days I often vow to complete that series of posts – and a recent note from Edward (Ted) Hathaway, head of Special Collections at Minneapolis Central Library, inspires me to take long overdue action. Clearly, the task of researching the histories has been greatly simplified for all of us who want to be more engaged – or who just want to better understand – the city’s magnificent park system.
The essence of the news is this: The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) and Hennepin County Library (HCL) are excited to announce the successful transfer of a huge collection of MPRB proceedings, reports and other historic documents to Minneapolis Central Library.
Attached is the announcement that explains the full import of the move and offers more information about access. Because it seems relevant I’m also attaching a list of park/neighborhood related articles and posts from this blog.
Attachment #1 – Announcement:
The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) and Hennepin County Library (HCL) are excited to announce the successful transfer of a huge collection of MPRB proceedings, reports and other historic documents to Minneapolis Central Library. (See full notice attached.)
Thousands of documents providing a detailed, fascinating record of Minneapolis park history are now open to the public at the James K. Hosmer Special Collections located on the fourth floor of Central Library. This collection holds archival material that shows the growth, improvement and programming of the Minneapolis park system from the early 1880s through the 1960s. It includes:
- Proposals and correspondences tracing the evolution of the Minneapolis park system as it grew to encompass 15% of the city’s land
- Reports and petitions illuminating significant park issues across different eras
- Official Board actions including agreements, policies and contracts
James K. Hosmer Special Collections is open to the public Monday-Thursday, 10 am-4:30 pm, as well as the first and third Saturdays of the month, 10 am-4:30 pm.
Discover the history of your neighborhood park or learn more about the development of iconic Minneapolis landmarks in the Minneapolis Parks Collection, now available at Central Library.
If you haven’t discovered the wonders of the Minneapolis Central Library’s James Hosmer Special Collections start here: http://www.hclib.org/specialcollections#visitors-guide
Attachment #2 – Links to the park stories posted or published to date – more to follow!
- Logan Park (https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/tag/logan-park/) ,
- Windom (https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2012/10/13/walkers-pedestrians-walking-walk-to-end-hunger-presidents-walk-minneapolis-voter-id-minnesota-raise-our-collective-voices/_ and others. I learned too about the Grand Rounds – still a work in progress (https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2011/07/24/907/).
- Deming Heights: https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2011/07/20/859/
- Logan Park: https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/tag/logan-park/
- Windom Park: https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2010/11/20/william-windom-as-in-windom-park/ and https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2012/10/13/walkers-pedestrians-walking-walk-to-end-hunger-presidents-walk-minneapolis-voter-id-minnesota-raise-our-collective-voices/
- Audubon Park: https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/tag/audubon-park-minneapolis/
- Stinson Conservancy: https://www.tcdailyplanet.net/neighborhood-notes-story-stinson-parkway-conservancy/