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Watershed Atlas
Mystery #2


This hotel was built in our town to give the town a 'better' hotel. It opened in 1855. It was rated as one of the largest and finest in the 'West.' Many important people came to our town during the 1800's. Here are a few. In 1856, Abraham Lincoln made a speech from its balcony. General Grant used it many times. Jenny Lind, the Swedish Nightingale, gave a concert here in 1864. When the railroads bypassed our town, the city began to get smaller and less important. In 1880 the two vacant top floors of this hotel were removed. To do this, the roof was jacked up, the floors removed one at a time and the roof lowered onto the then top floor. Beginning in the 1970's a series of owners made renovations to the hotel. It is now restored and in use.

This larger than life size painting called "Peace in the Union" hangs in the Historical Museum in our town. It was presented to the city in 1895 and was painted by the famous painter Thomas Nast. The painting shows the surrender of General Lee at the Appomattox Court House, April 9th, 1865. General Lee surrendered to the most famous citizen from our town. Our town had nine Civil War Generals.

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Center for Global Environmental Education
Hamline University Graduate School of Education
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