19th Century, Archaeology, History, Intercession, Mississippi River, U.S. Constitution, Uncategorized

The New Minneapolis: More Bridges 1872

1280px-Comity_Clause1872
“New bridges across the Mississippi unite the communities of Minneapolis and St. Anthony. With the addition of the older town on the east side of the river, Minneapolis will have a population of 46,000 by 1880.” *

It’s amazing that something as simple as a bridge can have such a profound effect on a city! As we ponder the function of bridges in the context of history, we can see their contribution to the relationships established through new freedom of movement. Perhaps one of greatest human rights granted Minnesotans, (or any people, tribe, or nation), would fall under the categories of “mobility rights” or the human “right to travel”?

What did this look like in legal terms? Within the U.S. Constitution, Article IV, Section 2, Clause 1 states that “The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.” ** So what does this mean to us in plain words, but a “a right of interstate travel may be plausibly inferred from the clause.” ref. Comity Clause **

What say You, Omnipresent One? It follows that the G-d Who is Everywhere would create us to move freely to better know our neighbor. It follows, to me, that as Author of Human Life, You encourage our petit movements, petit and gros actually, because You have created this universe, state, and city to be our playground. We remember and gratefully honor this inalienable right You bestow on all people throughout all times!

Will You forgive us for attempting to usurp this mandate? When and where we have been crushed by our authorities’ arrogance against Your Will; can You forgive us? Where we have, from a place of power instead of benevolence, taken or confined another person against their will; can You forgive our personal expressions of Nietzschean’ will-to-power?

Thank You for the blessings of the bridges of this state; both literal and figurative. Will You forgive any sins against You through the cultural clash of Western Europeans in Minneapolis with the Eastern European influence in St. Anthony? Our heritage matters to You; will You enable us to celebrate it today? Pour out Your blessings on us! May we forever explore Your neighborhood!

*http://www.mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm

**https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Privileges_and_Immunities_Clause

 

Standard
19th Century, History, Intercession, Judgment & Counter-Judgment Cycle, Logging, Minnesota, Mississippi River

Giant Logjam 1894

Unknown

1894

“Logs bound for sawmills choke the Mississippi River at Little Falls. It takes six months to break up the six-mile-long woodpile. For the past 50 years, rivers have been the highways that carry logs to the mills. Lumberjacks keep the logs moving and break up jams. Now, small trunk railway lines are also heading deep into the forests to haul out the logs.” * 

What an apropos metaphor for work! We work hard to improve out lot in life. We take risks and make investments, but our timing can be off, and our productivity grinds to a halt. Forces beyond our control stop our progress, and sometimes years of our efforts are undone?! 

Why is this, One Who Orders the Universe? Why do we kill ourselves for a future payoff that may or may not come? Why are we dissatisfied with ’enough’, and push for ‘a little bit more’? Why do others we depend on slack and coast in their work? 

Again, thanks that You are a good dad! You gave this land a blessing of trees that were the perfect building material for this climate. You gave this land a blessing of a mighty river to move those trees to others. Thanks that You provide good things for us to use for ourselves and share with others! 

Will You forgive us our gluttony for lumber? Whether it was the loggers, the mills, or the lumber barons it does not matter. You know how each party contributed to this problem. Will You forgive us this offense, and the judgements of those upriver, downriver, or in the office?

* http://www.mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm

**Learn more details about this giant logjam and the community of Little Falls, MN? http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89064525/

***How did logging in this era impact the environment? 

https://www.ncrs.fs.fed.us/gla/reports/history.htm

 

 

Standard
19th Century, Architecture, History, Intercession, Minnesota, Mississippi River, omnipresent history, railroad, Transportation

Stone Arch Bridge Opens 1883

images

November 23, 1883

“The Stone Arch Bridge spans the Mississippi below St. Anthony Falls. Once called “Jim Hill’s Folly,” the bridge provides a crossing for trains and becomes a Minneapolis landmark.”

First, I need to confess my bias against the railroad barons based on my reading in college to You. Will You forgive my assumption that Hill was a “Robber Baron” like many of his peers; captains of industry synonymous with trains? The rails in this era often made choices that yielded pain for the Midwestern farmer, manufacturer, or anyone who wasn’t in partnership with them. (They gained sweetheart deals for themselves and their allies, and charged exorbitant prices to the farmer whose harvest would spoil if they waited for better. I do not abhor competition, but bristle when I sense oligarchic or monopolistic control.) 

Digging into my assumptions, I found that I had wrongly placed all capitalists of this epoch in the same camp, but this is inaccurate. May I elaborate? Market capitalism is based on building a better product, and selling it at a voluntarily determined price. State capitalism twists the arm of government to sell an inferior product at an involuntary price. 

Clearly, Hill belonged more to the former camp than the latter according to Loyola economics professor Thomas J. DiLorenzo. Here lies evidence of Hill’s opposition to the state capitalism of the “Robber Barons”.

“Hill’s rates fell steadily, and when farmers began complaining about the lack of grain storage space, he instructed his company managers to build larger storage facilities near his rail depots. He refused to join in attempts at cartel price fixing and in fact “gloried in the role of rate-slasher and disrupter of [price-fixing] pooling agreements,” writes historian Burton Folsom. After all, he knew that monopolistic pricing would have been an act of killing the goose that lays the golden egg.” **

Additionally, the following quote of Professor DiLorenzo hints at why Hill’s competitors mocked the Stone Arch Bridge as “folly”, and his own internal motives.

 “In building his transcontinental railroad, from 1886 to 1893, Hill applied the same strategy that he had in building the St. Paul, Minneapolis, and Manitoba: careful building of the road combined with the economic cultivation of the nearby communities. He always built for durability and efficiency, not scenery, as was sometimes the case with the government-subsidized railroads. He did not skimp on building materials, having witnessed what harsh Midwest winters could do to his facilities and how foolish it was for the NP (Northern Pacific Railroad – his competitor) to have ignored this lesson. The solid granite arch bridge that Hill built across the Mississippi River was a Minneapolis landmark for many years.” ***

G-d, did I have it all wrong! I find myself humbled to discover that Hill is a good man, who built a better railroad. Will You honor those like him, who love their work, and offer it back to You and society as an act of worship?!

Will You free those of us harboring bitterness towards the state capitalists, and towards this spirit in man that is willing to use the law in self service? Will You free us from the admonition “Good enough for government work”? Will You lift this spirit of the slacker: up, out, and onto the Cross of Christ?

Lord, quite honestly, I hate the heritage of price fixing and theft! I abhor the curse that these judgment’s have put on our state, its’ people, our freedom of travel, and all lands that were granted, bought or stolen by the railroad lines. I  despise how the rails withheld the good that they could have chosen to perform for their fellow man, and still yielded a generous profit!

Yet, I am a man of mixed motives just like them. I withhold from doing the good I know I can do, and sin against my brother in my heart. I judge them. I think evil of them in my thoughts. I harbor resentment. Lord Jesus, King of the Universe, have mercy on me a sinner for my judgments!

Will You bring blessing to every rail, every piece of land, every train, every rail employee, and all the cargo that enters or exits this state of Minnesota? Will You profoundly bless the Stone Arch bridge, and esteem its’ symbolism? Will You be the bridge and span this rift between free-market entrepreneurs and fixed-market magnates? Amen!

* http://www.mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm

** DiLorenzo, Thomas J. “The Truth About the “Robber Barons”” excerpt of Chapter 7 “How Capitalism Saved America”. Internet. MIses Institute. 11/01/2017. https://mises.org/library/truth-about-robber-barons

*** DiLorenzo citing Burton W. Folsom Jr., “Entrepreneurs vs. the State: A New Look at the Rise of Big Business in America”, 1840 — 1920 (Herndon, VA: Young America’s Foundation, 1987

**** Read more about these lovely arches? https://www.minneapolisparks.org/parks__destinations/historical_sites/stone_arch_bridge/#group_2_150339

Standard
19th Century, Energy, History, Intercession, Minnesota, Mississippi River

First Hydroelectric Central Station

images

1882

“The falls of St. Anthony power the first hydroelectric central station operating in the United States. People had been using water to run machinery for thousands of years, but those machines were located alongside the water. Now, water can generate power for machines far from the river. The new technology changes the shape of the city. Minneapolis industries that had clustered along the waterfront gradually move away. In 50 years, downtown will have turned away from the river to face the inland financial district; the streets closest to the river will be slums. “

We are part of an heritage of innovation: as both your children, and the citizens of this state. Thank you! Because You are present to all times, I ask this blessing on those who conceived, built, and operated the Hydroelectric Central Station. 

May all be blessed in the name and authority of Jesus. May you, your generations past, present, and future be blessed with the infinite power of the Holy Spirit of Hydraulics! May your heritage of science, engineering, and any other technologies flourish in this state and bless the whole world.

Conversely, may our expertise have a balance of humility. May our Hydro-technologists be in awe of Your technology: creation, creatures, and the universe. May they treat each other respectfully and not quash new technologies before they are developed. Amen!

* http://www.mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm

**More detail? http://www.mnopedia.org/event/hydroelectricity-minneapolis-september-5-1882

 

 

Standard
19th Century, Agriculture, Business, farming, Food, History, Industry, Intercession, Minnesota, Mississippi River, omnipresent history

Minneapolis Nation’s Flour Milling Capital 1880

300px-west_side_milling_district-minneapolis-c1905

1880

“Minnesota wheat and the power of St. Anthony Falls make Minneapolis the nation’s capital of flour milling. A year later, Pillsbury’s new A Mill is the largest flour mill in the world.” * 

My first thought is, ”How do I pray for a flour mill, and why is it important?” Show me why Lord. Possible reasons:

1. The Washburn mill exploded, which was the biggest in the world, allowing Pillsbury a chance to take the lead. So, do I pray about the effects of professional pride and jealousy?

2. It could be a simple acknowledgement of a real accomplishment; an amazingly quick rebuild! Simply viewing it as a story of hope.

3. What did the flour industry do for the city of Minneapolis and the State?

Jesus, You know our inmost thoughts, and yet you love us. Lord, Washburn and Pillsbury were competitors in the milling business. There’s nothing wrong with competition between these companies, or any other for that matter. However, if there were underhanded or bitter motives between them, will You release us from  the burden of their jealousy, and or pride? Will You cleanse St. Anthony Falls from any guilt brought on by any unethical competition?  

If everything was on the up and up, and the Washburn mills explosion was purely accidental, will You also cleanse us from the bitterness and sense of loss of that incident? Will You cleanse us of the spirit of blame? Will You heal this rift between  companies then, and show our present-day business culture how to compete without hating their rivals? I thank you today for blessings of outstanding Minnesota companies in the grain and milling business: General Mills and Cargill to name a few! 

Thank you for leaders who face major setbacks, and rebuild something amazing; brick by brick. Will You forgive our judgments of business leaders in milling, as well as their peers in all major industries here? The average person knows nothing of the intensity, risk, and sheer loneliness of being on top. Will You inform our hearts’, minds’, and creativity in the context of leadership?

Will You show us new ways of doing business in Minnesota that honor You and the creation we are stewards of, and help us redeem the business culture of the world? May our progeny say with Isaiah,

“Because the Sovereign LORD helps me, I will not be disgraced. Therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know I will not be put to shame.” Isaiah 50:7 **

*P.T.H. cites timeline formerly at this URL: mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm 

The Minnesota Historical Society Web site, http://www.mnhs.org , is fantastic! Check it out! Images are from https://images.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl; again, an amazing resource!

** http://biblehub.com/isaiah/50-7.htm

*** A wonderful synopsis of the explosion of Washburn A Mill. https://www.mnopedia.org/event/washburn-mill-explosion-1878

 

 

 

 

Standard
19th Century, Agriculture, Business, History, Intercession, Minnesota, Mississippi River

Washburn ‘A’ Mill Explodes

mh5-9-mp3-1w-r58

May 2, 1878

“The mill explodes when flour dust in the air inside it ignites. The explosion kills 18 workers, destroys five other mills, and decimates the surrounding area. Debris lands in Saint Paul, and the shock is felt in Stillwater. The event brings instant notoriety to Minneapolis.

The tragic explosion leads to reforms in the milling industry. Ventilation systems and other precautionary devices will be devised in order to prevent further tragedy.” *

Lord, this explosion truly impacted our state and city for decades. Will You forgive us our bitter root judgements of this event? Will You forgive any rash words and thoughts spoken by the rivals of the houses of Pillsbury and Washburn that may still be with us today? Will You cleanse the land, and the river from the bifurcations of this blast?

If the root sin of pride is an issue, (because of its largesse), will You forgive and release all the inheritors of this separation? We need You to provide our food! We welcome You to Minnesota, to the Falls of St. Anthony! Come and ‘be present at our table Lord!’

*P.T.H. cites timeline formerly at this URL: mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm
The Minnesota Historical Society Web site, http://www.mnhs.org , is fantastic! Check it out! Images are from https://images.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl; again, an amazing resource!

Standard
19th Century, Agriculture, Architecture, Business, Civics, Energy, History, Industry, Intercession, Labor, Minnesota, Mississippi River

Industry at St. Anthony Falls 1872

640px-Stanthonyrecession.jpg

1872

Minneapolis industries cluster around the power of St. Anthony Falls. The Minneapolis Board of Trade estimates that the 95 waterwheels at the falls produce 6,000 horsepower.*

Lord, thank You for the gift of the Mississippi and those who harnessed its power. Thank You for the individuals and groups that contributed to its’ planning and investment? You work through those who skillfully manage money! Will You bless the entrepreneur? You work through those who take major risks to create business?

Too often we are guilty of failing to properly acknowledge the reflection of Your glory through the wonderful skills of tradesmen and women! Do You enjoy watching your people build? Will You bless these and their generations’: the cement worker, the engineer, the steel worker, the electrician, the riggers, the teamsters, and any other who labored on these projects?

Lord forgive us the sin of loving ‘science’ while simultaneously negating your creation. You had a plan for this city far before we began to envision what was possible. You created many electrical systems as well as the principals of hydraulics and physics in nature long before we were alerted to their existence.

How many more mysteries do You have to reveal to us? Forgive this root of ‘scientific pride’ in Minnesota. Will You replace it with humility and eternal curiosity that makes us better stewards of Your creation, technological advancement, and more receptivity to Your ideas?

*P.T.H. cites timeline formerly at this URL: mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm
The Minnesota Historical Society Web site, http://www.mnhs.org , is fantastic! Check it out! Images are from https://images.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl; again, an amazing resource!

Standard