Last week we introduced you to the first five of our list of 150 Morrison County Influentials. We named them, but didn’t tell you why they were important to the history of the county. Today we’ll reveal the whys and give you five more Influentials.
1. Zebulon Pike – conducted the first official government exploration of Morrison County when he was sent to explore the upper Mississippi River (1805-06). When he reached Morrison County, winter descended and he was forced to build a fort for shelter. A monument to Pike’s expedition sits on private property near the fort site, which is now underwater. The monument is constructed of stones used in the fireplace of the fort.
2. Joseph Nicollet – created the first accurate map of this area after his 1836 exploration of the Mississippi River.
3. Frederick Ayer – missionary, started a Congregational mission and first school in the county at Belle Prairie in 1849.
4. Elizabeth Ayer – also a missionary, started mission at Belle Prairie with her husband – wrote to family out east to encourage them to move to area.
5. Elizabeth Hayes (Mother Mary Ignatius of Jesus) – Franciscan nun who started the Institute of the Missionary Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception in Belle Prairie c. 1872. Also started St. Anthony’s Academy in 1873. After her convent burned in 1889, some of the Sisters started the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception in Little Falls.
Okay, here are the next five Morrison County Influentials for you to think about for the next week:
6. Father Francis Xavier Pierz
7. Chief Hole in the Day I (Pugona-geshig)
8. Chief Hole in the Day II (Kwi-wi-sens)
9. William Whipple Warren
10. William Aitken