History Posts

Postcard from the Palladio Building

This undated postcard shows the original Palladio Building at 401 W. Superior St. in Downtown Duluth. The eight-story office building was designed by Chicago architect Henry Raeder and built in 1889. It was demolished in 1937 and replaced by the headquarters of WEBC Radio.

The new building later became known as the Palladio and housed the Chinese Lantern until the restaurant moved up the block in 1976. The second Palladio was demolished in 2015 to make room for the new Maurice’s headquarters, which opened in 2016.

Duluth Harbor Circa 1870s

Although this old photograph is labeled “Duluth Harbor,” it’s not what we think of today as the harbor. Based on a similar photo posted to Perfect Duluth Day in 2020 and the resulting discussion surrounding it in the comments, it was determined that the tall building shown in our photo here is the Lake Superior & Mississippi Railroad Grain Elevator A and was located roughly where the Northland Vietnam Veterans Memorial is today.

Postcards from the Duluth Arena-Auditorium

Included in this post are four postcards, all published by Gallagher’s Studio of Photography, showing the early days of what is now known as the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center. Numerous buildings have been added to the DECC campus over the years, but these postcards show only the original two, then known as the Duluth Arena and Duluth Auditorium.

Tiny Titanic

A Proctor family uncovered a surprising connection when buying a house — it had belonged to Anna Larsen, a survivor of the Titanic disaster. Jason and Kim Seguin’s son Jaxson was obsessed with the Titanic and so Jason, an experienced metalworker, decided to build his own scale model of the ship and put it in their front yard.

This feature was produced and edited by Silver Brook Township’s Mike Scholtz for the southwestern Minnesota Pioneer PBS series Postcards. It aired Feb. 17

Video Archive: Superior’s Old Firehouse & Police Museum Tour

This video tour of Superior’s Old Firehouse & Police Museum was given by one of its founders, Leonard Rouse, in the early 1990s. The station closed Oct. 4, 1982 and later became a museum. The video was shot by Tad Matheson.

Postcard from the St. Louis County Courthouse at Night

This undated postcard features a nighttime image of the St. Louis County Courthouse, which opened in 1909.

Mystery Photo: Alice

This special Valentine’s Day Mystery Photo comes from the Duluth Public Library, where it was found in an office after one of the librarians retired. The photo is dated Oct. 28, 1918 and comes with a message of love on the back.

Postcard from Duluth, St. Lawrence Seaways Westerly Terminus

This undated postcard, published by Northern Minnesota Novelties of Crosslake, Minn., offers a nice pre-freeway aerial view of Downtown Duluth on it’s upper image and a shot of the Aerial Lift Bridge and shipping canal on the lower side.

Mystery Photo: Drag Racing on Lake Superior

Allouez Bay in Superior was recently the scene of a stock-car racing event, which might have seemed like a newish idea, but … the undated photo above has a handwritten message on the back that reads: “Taken on Lake Superior. Duluth in distance. Thousands on ice at time of races. A new sport. 24 in. of ice at time.”

Bob Mason with the save in 1982

This 40-year-old press photo shows University of Minnesota Duluth goalie Bob Mason about to make a save at Williams Arena in Minneapolis. It is credited to Star Tribune photographer Cletus “Pete” Hohn.

Postcard from a View on Duluth’s Hillside

This undated postcard shows Duluth’s Aerial Lift Bridge, ships on the lake, the Duluth Arena-Auditorium, parts of the Downtown and Canal Park areas and more circa perhaps 1980 or so.

A Bit More about Helen Futter

A reader has sent some information about Helen Futter, the subject (I think) of some thoughts I’ve had about record collections, midcentury media, and pop culture. (See here, here, here, here, and here.) Generally, reflecting on what (I think) was Helen’s record collection, donated by her estate to Gabriel’s Books in Lakeside, I treated her like a “typical teen,” listening to records on her “Victrola.”

Red pennants make sliding safe for kids at street intersections

An update to the post “Sledding Duluth’s Avenues in 1921“:

By 1922 it was determined that the safe thing to do is hang red pennants to warn drivers about popular sledding intersections.

Mystery Photo: Carl Thiel Cabinet Card

The identity of the woman in this photo is almost certainly lost to history, but on Perfect Duluth Day it’s always worth trying. What we know about this photo is the photography studio it came from and roughly when it was shot.

Postcard from a Scene in Fairmount Park

This postcard depicts a scene in Fairmount Park where Kingsbury Creek flows under the Duluth, Winnipeg and Pacific Railway bridge in West Duluth. It’s not clear if the postcard predates the 1923 opening of the Duluth Zoo, now the Lake Superior Zoo, just downstream of the location shown. The bridge is still there, now part of the DWP multi-use trail.

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