Duluth Civic Center Posts

The most prestigious flagpole in Duluth. Or perhaps anywhere.

The Soldiers and Sailors Monument. (Photo by Matthew James)

A few weeks ago a postcard of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument appeared on Perfect Duluth Day that included the text “by the noted sculptor Paul W. Bartlett of Paris.” That didn’t seem like a particularly French name to me so I decided to see if he was actually a noted sculptor and actually from Paris. Both counts proved accurate.

Bartlett was from Connecticut, but grew up in France and spent a considerable amount of time in Paris. But Bartlett only designed the statue in front of the monument. The architect Cass Gilbert designed the base that supports the flagpole. And both of these people gained considerable attention during their respective careers. Their most prominent works are within a few minutes walk of each other in Washington D.C. And when I learned this, I was attending a conference in Washington D.C., so I paid a visit to those works.

Postcard from the Soldiers and Sailors Monument

This undated postcard, published by Duluth Photo Engraving Company, shows the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Priley Circle at the Duluth Civic Center. The monument honors soldiers who served during the American Civil War. Designed by architect Cass Gilbert, it was completed and dedicated on Memorial Day in 1919.

The Rise and Fall and Rise and Fall (and Rise and Fall?) of Downtown Duluth’s Fifth Avenue West

Looking down Fifth Avenue West toward Duluth’s Spalding Hotel in 1889. University of Minnesota Duluth, Kathryn A. Martin Library, Northeast Minnesota Historical Collections

A few weeks ago, David Beard wrote a post on the future of the plaza next to the Ordean Building, noting plans for it to be sold to a private developer in conjunction with a future housing project. I recently wrote a rather long post about Gunnar Birkerts, the architect of the Duluth Public Library, and because his firm also designed the plaza, I ended up with enough information about this project that I thought it might be worthy of a follow-up post on the history of the Fifth Avenue Mall, a name so forgotten that a 2015 Perfect Duluth Day post referencing the mall clarifies that the word ‘mall’ as used here is “not about a shopping mall, but instead something like the decorative median with trees that stands in the middle of the avenue today.”

Postcard from the Proposed Court House Group in Duluth

This undated postcard depicts plans for the Duluth Civic Center, a cluster of government buildings that includes the St. Louis County Courthouse (1909), Duluth City Hall (1928), Gerald W. Heaney Federal Building (1930), St. Louis County Jail (1923) and the Soldiers and Sailors Monument (1919).

Former St. Louis County Jail renamed Leijona

The Duluth News Tribune reports that remodeling of the former St. Louis County Jail is near completion. It is expected to open in January as a 33-unit apartment building named Leijona, the Finnish word for lion.

General Eisenhower’s visit to Duluth in 1952

Seventy years ago today — Oct. 4, 1952 — Gen. Dwight David Eisenhower campaigned at the Duluth Civic Center. He won the election a month later, becoming the 34th President of the United States.

Postcard from Priley Fountain and the Radisson Hotel

This 50-year-old postcard shows what was then the new Radisson Hotel behind the also new-at-the time Priley Fountain at the Duluth Civic Center. The message on the back of the card was written July 14, 1972, and the card is postmarked the next day.

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.

St. Louis County Jail designs approved in 1921 … sort of

One hundred years ago today — May 11, 1921 — the Duluth Herald published a story about plans for a new St. Louis County Jail. The building that would eventually be constructed looks somewhat similar to the drawing here, but there were numerous changes to the plan.

Postcards from the Duluth Civic Center

Duluth’s Civic Center includes the St. Louis County Courthouse (1909), Duluth City Hall (1928), Gerald W. Heaney Federal Building (1930), St. Louis County Jail (1923) and the Soldiers and Sailors Monument (1919).

Postcard from the Duluth Civic Center

This undated postcard image from the Gallagher Studio of Photography shows the St. Louis County Courthouse and Duluth City Hall behind the Soldiers and Sailors Monument at the Duluth Civic Center. The card is perhaps a bit older than another postcard of the Civic Center featured on Perfect Duluth Day, which shows a more expansive garden.

Postcard from the Duluth Civic Center

This early 1970s postcard shows Duluth’s Civic Center, which includes the St. Louis County Courthouse, Duluth City Hall, Gerald W. Heaney Federal Building, St. Louis County Jail and the Soldiers and Sailors Monument.

Mystery Photo #84: Building near Duluth Arena

Sitting awkwardly between the Duluth Arena and the Radisson Hotel in this photo by Perry Gallagher is a seven-story building that can’t be far from demolition. What was it?

Mystery Photo #56: Duluth Ice Sculpture

There’s not a lot to go on in the featured photo, but hold on …

Then and Now: St. Louis County Courthouse

Duluth Civic Center

There is no date on the above postcard image, but it appears to be 1960s-ish. The photo below is a modern-day view.

Duluth Civic Center 2016