Garland, born 89 years ago this week in Grand Rapids, Minn., finished the show with – what else? – “Over the Rainbow.” The incomparable Barbara Flanagan covered the performance for the Minneapolis Star. Her story, posted previously in Yesterday’s News, describes Garland as a little jittery at the start. Maybe she was dehydrated. A timely glass of orange juice, offered by a nearby congressman, fueled her successful finale.
The original caption for this photo by Jack Gillis of the Minneapolis Star:
Here’s Judy in a black knit chemise as she sang to the crowd. She was accompanied by 32 members of the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra. In addition to special material, the Grand Rapids-born actress sang such hits as “Rockabye Your Baby With a Dixie Melody,” “The Trolley Song” and “For Me and My Gal.”
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The Minnesota State Fair has featured many unusual attractions in its 150-year history: death-defying aerial acts, colliding locomotives, freak shows, live animal births, the Minnesota Iceman and premature babies in incubators. Wait … what? The Minneapolis Morning Tribune was there:
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A musically inclined vagrant known as Banjo Ben walked the streets of Minneapolis in the city's early days. His weakness for alcohol and penchant for strong language landed him in court with some frequency. In February 1876, for example, he was sentenced to 20 days in jail for spewing obscenities at the St. Paul and Pacific depot. Later that year, he walked into the Tribune newsroom and issued an invitation to witness a spectacular feat at the new suspension bridge under construction nearby.
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