Saint Peter, Minnesota

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Saint Peter, Minnesota
State Minnesota
Nicollet County, Minnesota
Year founded 1853
Year Incorporated 1854
Country: United States
Population 10,631
Official web site:
St. Peter was founded in 1853 by Captain William Bigelow Dodd, who claimed 150 acres (0.61 km2) north of what is now Broadway Avenue. He named the new settlement Rock Bend because of the rock formation at the bend of the Minnesota River. The town site was platted and surveyed in 1854 by Daniel L. Turpin. In 1855 a group of St. Paul businessmen interested in promoting the town formed the Saint Peter Company, and the town was renamed St. Peter. The president of the Company was Willis A. Gorman, Territorial Governor of Minnesota.

In 1857 an attempt was made to move the capitol from St. Paul to St. Peter. Gov. Gorman owned the land on which the bill's sponsors wanted to build the new capitol building, and at one point had been heard saying, "If the capitol remains in Saint Paul, the territory is worth millions and I have nothing." At the time, St. Peter - a city in the central region of the territory - was seen as more accessible to the far-flung territorial legislators than St. Paul, which was in the extreme eastern portion of the territory, on the east bank of the Mississippi River. A bill was passed in both houses of the Territorial Legislature and was awaiting Governor Gorman's signature. A member of the Territorial Council (Senate) Joseph J. Rolette of Pembina (now in North Dakota), the son of a Canadian fur trapper and chairman of the enrollment committee, took the bill and hid in a St. Paul Hotel, drinking and playing cards with some friends as the City Police looked fruitlessly for him, until the end of the legislative session, too late for the bill to be signed. Rolette came into the chamber just as the session ended. One might say that the bill was an attempt to "rob Paul to pay Peter". Today, St. Paul is the second largest city in the state (second only to neighboring Minneapolis), while St. Peter is a relatively small rural town.

In 1851 the Treaty of Traverse des Sioux was signed between the Sioux (Dakota) and the U. S. Government just one mile (1.6 km) north of St. Peter. The Nicollet County Historical Society—Treaty Site History Center is located near the site of the treaty signing. The promises of the treaty were not kept. The Dakota became angered and the Dakota War of 1862 began in Cottonwood County. In August 1862 the Dakota attacked the German settlement of New Ulm. A company of volunteers from St. Peter, headed by Captain William B. Dodd, St. Peter's founder, went to the defense of New Ulm. Captain Dodd was killed on August 23, 1862, and was briefly buried in New Ulm. On November 11, 1862, Captain Dodd was buried with high military honors in St. Peter on the grounds of the Church of the Holy Communion (Episcopal), on land he donated to the church. Captain Dodd, his wife Harriet and two children are buried behind the present stone church built in 1869-70 at 118 North Minnesota Avenue.

In 1866 the Legislature established the first "Minnesota Asylum for the Insane" in St. Peter. Later it was known as the St. Peter State Hospital and now as St. Peter Regional Treatment Center.

From Wikipedia.


Related Links


    Buildings in Saint Peter, Minnesota

    # Street Neighborhood
    Hiram Jacoby Photography Studio, Minnesota Avenue, Saint Peter, Minnesota, (Razed) Minnesota Avenue
    Nicollet County Courthouse, 501 South Minnesota Avenue, Saint Peter, Minnesota 501501 Minnesota Street S
    Saint Peter Public Library, 429 Minnesota Avenue South, Saint Peter, Minnesota 429429 Minnesota Avenue S

    Structures in Saint Peter, Minnesota

    Sites in Saint Peter, Minnesota

    Saint Peter State Hospital, 2100 Sheppard Drive, Saint Peter, Minnesota
    Traverse des Sioux, Saint Peter, Nicollet County, Minnesota

    Tours in Saint Peter, Minnesota

    Personal tools
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