The most successful petitions at change.org — at least as far as Duluth is concerned — tend to be related to local colleges. A search of “Duluth” on the site finds six petitions in the past three years that have more than 1,000 signatures; five of those are associated with the University of Minnesota Duluth or College of St. Scholastica.
We are migrants, one and all, on el Camino del Tiempo, where even the housebound and hunkered-down awaken each morning somewhere they were not yesterday. We’ve emerged from the mists of history and the dreamtime of an infant’s amnesia, and set forth by wildly disparate means of conveyance toward the receding horizon. Signs signal a tomorrow around the bend, but tomorrow is a ghost-town appearing only on the maps, and you can’t get there from here.
So here we are, and there we go, by bullet train or afoot across the trackless wastes, but always on el Camino. Always schlepping our blood on its way down the generations. Always the short skirts and tight pants of the baby-making dance, and the will to carry on.
I marvel at the elaborate ruses concocted to transport one’s genes down el Camino. Marvel at the termite tenacity of these roadside encampments we call cities. Marvel at the hive-life of our super-organism, striving for a meal and a place to sleep and a place to dance the baby-making dance. I shudder at the nighttime photos from space of our settlements glowing golden. Earth burning like the oil lamp it’s become. And between the cities lies the darkened land, yet to trade stars for streetlights.
Lars Waldner posted this circa 1916 image to Facebook, tagging PDD. It’s kind of a bizarre angle on Duluth, and for some reason identifying buildings in the photo is exceptionally challenging. The only cheater we’re given is the big sign on the side of Rust-Parker Wholesale Grocery Company, which was at 217 S. Lake Ave.
This undated postcard image of the Tweed Museum of Art appears to be circa the 1970s. The text on the back reads:
The only major art gallery in Northern Minnesota, Tweed Gallery on the University of Minnesota, Duluth campus has attracted more than 300,000 visitors since it opened in 1958. Funds for the gallery were donated by Mrs. Alice Tweed Tuohy, now of Santa Barbara, California and her daughter, Mrs. John Brickson, Duluth. Twenty shows each year feature international, national, faculty and student artists in four separate exhibition areas.
Before Nicholas David was a finalist on NBC’s The Voice, he was known as Nick “The Feelin'” Mrozinski, a singer-songwriter based in St. Paul whose band frequently backed up Duluth music-scene staple Teague Alexy.
The song “Bob Dylan Loves Duluth” first appeared on the Feelin’ Band’s 2008 album The Sacred Play of Life and was released again the same year on Mrozinski’s solo piano album, Oak Chase Way. The version above is from the 2010 compilation album Midwest Jam Season 1, on which Mrozinski is credited simply as the Feelin’.