On Wednesday, September 10, 1913, the Little Falls Daily Transcript announced that two deer purchased from the city of Mankato, Minnesota, for Pine Grove Park had arrived the previous night “…by express and are now the pioneer inhabitants of the deer enclosure at the park.” Money for the deer had been raised through popular subscription, largely through the efforts of Val. E. Kasparek, who later became one of the founders of the Morrison County Historical Society. The deer were housed in a 2½ acre fenced enclosure in the park. According to the Transcript, “(h)aving tame deer at the park will be a fine thing for local big game hunters as they will be able to become acquainted with the species and will consequently be less apt to slaughter some settler’s cattle.” The deer and the owls who were already residents at the park were the start of what later became Pine Grove Zoo.
Pine Grove Park was established in 1907 on the west side of Little Falls in order to preserve one of the last remaining stands of white pine in the state of Minnesota. The fifty-five acre park was set aside for the benefit of the public and is located approximately ten blocks west of the Mississippi River. For more information see Pine Grove Park, M.M. Williams – An Influential Man, Preserving The Trees At Pine Grove Park, Storm Photos.
Thomas H. Dewey feeding the deer in Pine Grove Park during the winter of 1917-18. Photo by Alfred Molde.
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The Morrison County Genealogy Society will be hosting a Family History Conference on Saturday, April 13, 2013, at the Initiative Foundation in Little Falls, MN.
Poster for MCGS Family History Conference, April 2013
For a registration brochure, click this link: http://morrisoncountyhistory.org/mcgsconfbro2013.pdf
Printing Plate for 1936 Condition Map of Minnesota Trunk Highways, Minnesota Department of Highways
The 1930s may have been a time of economic crisis but that did not stop all progress, including the improvement of roads. This 1936 printing plate for a Condition Map of Minnesota Trunk Highways, published by the State of Minnesota, Department of Highways, in St. Paul, Minnesota, shows that most major road surfaces throughout the state had been markedly improved during the previous decades. Instigated by popular demand and the pressure of the newly formed highway lobby, which was initially funded by bicycle manufacturers, the good roads movement led to the passing of federal and state legislation and the improvement of road networks, including those in Morrison County. According to the printing plate, Morrison County’s major roads in 1936 were either paved or bituminous. Both Highway 371 and the portion of Highway 10 from Royalton to Little Falls were paved. Highway 10 from Little Falls through Randall and Cushing was bituminous. State Highway 27, the main route running east-west across the center of the county, was also bituminous.
The printing plate was donated by the family of Mary (Johannes) Fietek (1921-1984). Mary was born in Culdrum Township on October 15, 1921, to Erich and Anna Johannes. She married Clement Fietek on October 15, 1940, and had five children – Clarence, Leon, Gregory, Anna and JoAnn. Mary worked as an inspector for Munsingwear Manufacturing of Little Falls for twenty years. One of Mary’s hobbies was apparently printmaking, which came as a surprise to her children who found the printing plate and a marking stamp set while cleaning out a closet in the family home.
For more information on the history of Minnesota roads, Minnesota Department of Transportation Library or call 651-366-3791 (toll free 800-657-3774).
Printing Plate for 1936 Condition Map of Minnesota Trunk Highways (Legend), Minnesota Department of Highways
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