Recent content from Curt Brown
Carl Simmons, who maneuvered a crippled Boeing 727 to safety, died in January after he was hit by a car.
The family name became synonymous with achievement in St. Peter.
Passionate courtship letters had lit up the love between the then-emerging architect in St. Paul and his wife-to-be in Milwaukee.
When it came to antiquing, Clarence and Jean Larson made a good husband-and-wife team in southwestern Minnesota in 1980. He could fix just about anything…
Grave No. 384 in Section A-3 commemorates one of the more remarkable lives among the 240,000 military people and family members buried at Fort Snelling…
Some history buffs dig into genealogy websites to mine ancestors' records. Some send in saliva for DNA scrutiny. Others comb through photo albums and mildewed…
It became one of Minnesota's first clashes between conservationists and industry.
"It really was the heart of the community," said Northfield historian Susan Hvistendahl.
It was Oct. 5, 1957, an idyllic autumn Saturday in Foley, an east-central Minnesota town of 1,100 people, and Roger Vaillancourt, 17, was goofing around…
Lois Gildemeister played the organ at the First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Grand Rapids, Minn., for decades of Sundays starting in the early 1930s. The…
Walt Straka was a 22-year-old shoemaker's son and one of 64 Minnesota National Guard troops from Brainerd belonging to Company A of the Army's 194th Tank Battalion.
If you think your vote really doesn’t matter this week, talk to 99-year-old Tom Swain. Born on the Fourth of July, Swain graduated from Washburn…
Rebecca Marshall Cathcart was said to be the oldest Minnesotan when she died in her St. Paul home in 1925 at age 95.
Veteran cops at the time considered it the most brutal crime Minneapolis had seen in the city's 45 years.
U.S. humanitarian aid had poured into Belgium — including tons of wheat milled in Minnesota — before the United States joined World War I.
When Ken Micko's daughter was being born in 1945, he was parachuting out of his flaming B-24 over Berlin.
Donald Singerman made his community theater group, the Grotto Players, into a force.
Abigail Hunt Snelling Chaplin was more than a helpmate at the early years of the fort bearing her name
A look at the pioneer woman, who arrived at the confluence of the Minnesota and Mississippi rivers 200 years ago.
Two unemployed telegraph linemen looking for work on St. Paul’s East Side happened upon a deadly confrontation on the Mississippi River on Sept. 19, 1900.…
St. Marys School of Nursing won military approval to train nurses of Japanese heritage living in internment camps.
The bleeding heart plant, with its pink heart-shaped flowers, was first grown by Elizabeth Style Sullivan's grandmother. Liz's mother, Mary Style, subsequently transplanted some in…
During a 36-year career, Carolen Bailey served as a homicide investigator and vice squad commander before working with the state.
Almost immediately, Tawasuota regretted killing an unarmed man, according to an account published 45 years later.
The swirl of world events threw a few knuckleballs into major league baseball in 1918 — namely a deadly flu pandemic and World War I.At…
She steals in the show in "A Brief History of Women in Bars: A Minnesota Story in Three Rounds," even being in it just in the final minutes.
Nearly 50 years after she died in 1974 at 95, her life story has been captured in a book compiled and published by her grandson.
Finding Grandpa's letters home can be a moving experience, if not necessarily rare. But what the Burnsville man did with them embraces a new approach.
Research connects the dots between the St. Paul photographer and the artist, who was a Minneapolis house painter with higher aspirations.
Molly Ivins' stint in Minneapolis was comparatively short, 1967 to 1970, but memorable.
The radio crackled with an urgent message for the exhausted volunteer rescuers aboard a Red Cross amphibious duck boat."Go to 56 West Fairfield," the dispatcher…
Dr. Henry Buchwald operated on more than 10,000 patients as the longest-serving University of Minnesota surgeon. Now the renowned Edina doctor, teacher and researcher, who…
Keys in hand, the minister went to check out the bungalow he’d just purchased at 4441 Zenith Av. S., near Lake Harriet in the Linden…
No one has ever been arrested in what is still an open case. Her daughter and son assume she was murdered.
Holly Hannah Lewis shaped the letters into a 125-page book for family members.
An all-volunteer army of history buffs is trying to make sure the servicemen and women we lost aren't forgotten 75 years later.
The documentary debuts Sunday as part of the virtual Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival.
Milburn Henke, a 23-year-old cafe owner's kid from Hutchinson, was the first American combat GI to set foot on European soil in World War II.
More than 160 years later, Ann Bilansky's execution remains punctuated with question marks.
Her methods largely rebuked in Australia and fell on deaf ears around the U.S., until she got to Minnesota.
The glass eye sat in a box on a high kitchen window sill. Olga Dahl King left it there because she found it uncomfortable, preferring…
In a new book, a great-granddaughter reveals an instrumental character in the Minnesota music scene from 1898 to 1946.
More than 70% of Minnesota's cases and half the state's deaths hit those under 15.
A painting in Burton Hall of the British battleship HMS Victory at the Battle of Trafalgar was donated by the late Rodney Wallace. But where did he get it?
After spending the first half of his life in crime, including with Al Capone, Morris "Red" Rudensky redefined prison reform during his later years.
Tom Teresi and Mark Kaplan had to be grinning as the sun rose over Minneapolis on March 17, 1960. By nightfall, sorrow would shadow the…
Between her time on the stages of Europe and as a voice instructor at Juilliard in New York, Anna Schoen-René spent 16 years in Minneapolis.
Maurice Jernigan asked early Minnesota legislators to remove just one word from the state Constitution: white.
His story arced from his days as an early Minneapolis cop, lumberman, teamster and wounded Civil War soldier to an Army scout in the Arizona Territory of the late 1800s.
In the summer of 1906, 48 members of the St. Olaf College band sailed into history. Playing 26 concerts in Norway that July, the all-male…
During a Depression-era summer, a state highway patrolman drove Gov. Floyd B. Olson 55 miles south to Zumbrota, Minn. The socialist-leaning governor wanted to talk…
Minnesota's entire black population stood at one-third of 1 percent in 1890, when Eva was a toddler. Today, St. Paul is home to nearly 50,000.
Jay Hormel became one of the first Minnesotans to enlist when the U.S. entered the Great War in 1917.
Razed in 1956 and now a public park, Swede Hollow became home to a revolving cast of poor immigrants on St. Paul's lower East Side.
Those letters surfaced in 1975. But the breakthrough that put a face with those words didn't come until 2017.
The government was offering a 160-acre parcel near Lutsen, about 100 miles northeast up the shore from Duluth.
The more things change, the more the issues stay the same 120 years later.
Part freak show, part pioneering neonatal hospital, the brick structure at 31st Avenue S. and 31st Street is all that's left of the amusement park.
Guy Flanagan was among the last sailors off the USS Arizona, making him luckier than more than 1,100 entombed on the bombed battleship.
Two hours before he was hanged, Adelbert Goheen penned a statement, still insisting his brother killed Rosetta Bray.
John "Tooze" Rogers climbed from cash-strapped hotel bellhop in 1880 to own a series of saloons, theaters and an elegant Nicollet Avenue hotel.
The new book, "Professor Berman: The Last Lecture of Minnesota's Greatest Public Historian," is full of his delicious insight.
Martha Rogers Ripley didn't arrive in Minnesota until she was 40, but her 28 frenetic years here were frenetic ones.
Despite the squalid conditions, Marcus Hertz knew sticking it out as a prisoner of war was his best chance to get home.
Elmer Ellsworth Foster, who played in the 19th century, is maybe the best Minnesota baseball player you never heard of,
At age 21, bookkeeper Henry Carlson got a crazy idea 100 years ago.
It is a complex legacy for a state that prided itself as an anti-slavery bastion and outlawed the practice in its territorial and state constitutions.
Some people play pickleball when they retire. Others knit or play cribbage. Carol Kissner had a different idea. She became a volunteer cemetery sleuth, poking…
Handwritten during a couple's courtship, the 100-plus letters were laced with their beliefs, passions and dreams.
It’s a museum hiding in plain sight. Take the elevator down from the chaotic lobby to the basement of Hennepin County Medical Center in downtown…
Engla Schey was determined to make life better for 10,000 Minnesotans locked in seven state institutions in the 1940s.
Until her retirement in 1987, she spent nearly 45 years as a cog in that giant Sears retail machine, taking her frustration out on the field.
Sonnen's Pet Shop oozes history at 408 St. Peter St. in the Hamm Building.
Not surprisingly, Myrtle Cain's dark brown hair had gone gray. After all, she'd been waiting 50 years for this moment.Now 78, she sat in the…
When her southern Minnesota hometown came calling in 1890, she faced a career quandary rare for women of the era.
"I was one of the lucky ones," Clarence Penaz said of the day when 19 sailors died and more than a dozen were injured.