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This is a timeline of historical events relating to Northfield, Minnesota.
1851- The U.S. government imposed a treaty on the Dakota people, Siouan-speaking Native Americans who had been in this territory since at least the 17th century. Indigenous peoples of varying cultures had lived in the area for thousands of years before that. The treaty allowed European-American settlement in southern Minnesota. Most of the Dakota were removed to a reservation near New Ulm, Minnesota. The treaty marked part of the decline of the Dakotah Nation, adversely affected by infectious disease and warfare. The people have undergone a revival since the later 20th century, however. The treaty paved the way for the foundation of Northfield.
1851- William Marshall surveyed land and helped John W. North, a migrant from Syracuse, New York, pick out land to build mills and a town, to be called Northfield.
1854- May, Daniel Kuykendall was the first European-American pioneer to arrive in the area. Others soon followed.
1855- On August 17, 1855, North purchased 160 acres (647,000 m²) of land from each of the other two original pre-emptors.
1856- September, Miron W. Skinner and his brother moved to Northfield and opened the second town store. He was instrumental in the establishment of Northfield College, now known as Carleton College. (See 1916 note about building of Skinner Chapel on the campus.)
1856- Herman Jenkins built the first hotel in Northfield.
1857 John L. Schofield came to Northfield and was the town’s first doctor. He built the first drugstore, which was attached to his house. John North suffered financial failure in the Panic of 1857.
1859- Charles Augustus Wheaton bought John North's financial interests and became one of the early town leaders.
1865- Jesse Ames moved to town and bought mills from Charles Augustus Wheaton.
1866- The Minnesota Conference of Congregational Churches and Charles M. Goodsell established Northfield College, later named Carleton College.
1867- Wheaton and Goodsell each gave a 10-acre (40,000 m2) plot of land to the fledgling Northfield College to establish the college campus north of the main part of town.
1871- Northfield College changes its name to Carleton College, after benefactor William Carleton of Charlestown, Massachusetts, who had given US$50,000 to the fledgling institution.
1875- Hiram Scriver was elected first mayor of Northfield.
1874- St. Olaf College was founded by Rev. B.J. Muus, Harold Thorson and two area farmers, members of the Norwegian Lutheran Church.
1876- September 7, Attempted robbery of the First National Bank by the James-Younger gang. Bank treasurer Joseph Lee Heywood was killed after refusing to open bank safe.
1877- James D. Archer opened the second hotel in the Northfield area. (see 1959 note about Dallas Haas below)
1882- W. S. Pattee was superintendent of schools and also taught at Carleton College. Later he practiced law in Northfield, and became dean of the law school at the University of Minnesota.
1884—Joel P. Heatwole arrived in Northfield. He bought The News and made it the leading weekly newspaper in the state. Technologically, it was a model of what a printing office should be.
1889- Margaret Evans' administrative title at Carleton College was changed to “lady principal” and in 1898 to “dean of the women’s department.” Known as Dean Evans, she was a towering figure in Carleton history.
1893- J. C. Nutting, president of First National Bank, planned and financed the construction of the Nutting Block to house the Northfield Knitting Company.
1895- W. F. Schilling came to Northfield. Once an editor of the Northfield News, Schilling became a Holstein breeder and a prominent agriculturalist in the state and the nation. He wrote the book, "My first Eighty Years”, which was published in 1952 by Mohn Printing.
1897- Link Fey, built one of the first successful gasoline-powered automobiles in Minnesota.
1898- Laura M. Baker opened a school to serve special students under the age of fourteen.
1914- Northfield adopted a town slogan, “Northfield: Cows, Colleges and Contentment.” The slogan was replaced by "Northfield: A Special Place," in the 1960s. In the 1980s, sentiment, a sense of humor, and marketing savvy lead to the renewed use of the old slogan.
1916- Emily Willey Skinner, wife of Miron W. Skinner, gave a large, Gothic style chapel to Carleton College on its 50th anniversary.
1918- W. M. Savage founded the Dan Patch Train Line.
1924- R.C. Phillips joined the fire department, where he served for 42 years as chief. He holds the record in the U.S. for being present at every fire fought by his firemen.
1927- John S. Campbell founds of Malt-O-Meal.
1934- George Gibson, who taught geology and coached football at Carleton College (His 611 career victories is the second-best among coaches with four or more seasons as the head coach.) He received many honors and awards in his field, among them election to the Petroleum Museum Hall of Fame in 2001.
1955- G. T. Schjeldahl started Sheldahl Company. It manufactured laminated products such as fabric for the inflatable "Echo" satellites and under-dashboard circuits for cars. After a merger in 2004, it became Multek Flexible Circuits, Inc.
1959- Dallas Haas, a building contractor, moved to Northfield with his wife Sandra and found a ready housing market. In June 1981, Haas and his wife, Sandra, purchased the Stuart Hotel and began work on what became Division Street’s most famous building (after the First National Bank), the Archer House. Dallas Haas Construction was named Industry of the Year by the Northfield Industrial Corporation in 1983.[ citation needed ]
1967- Maggie Lee becomes Editor of The Northfield News.
1975- Longtime Northfield News writer and editor, Maggie Lee, helped found the Northfield Historical Society. She was awarded the Hometown Spirit Award October 19, 1993.
1991- Greg Heyman opens Hogan Brothers’ Acoustic Café
2004- Maggie Lee celebrated 50 years in journalism. She continues to write columns and features for the newspaper.
2008- Mary Rossing becomes the first female mayor and a female majority is elected to the city council for the first time.
2020- The Archer House Inn, a hotel which had been operating since 1877, is destroyed in a fire caused by a faulty smoker in a barbecue restaurant stationed in the building.
Northfield is a city in Dakota and Rice counties in the State of Minnesota. It is mostly in Rice County, with a small portion in Dakota County. The population was 20,790 at the 2020 census. Northfield is 40 miles south of the downtowns of Minneapolis and St. Paul and is an exurb of the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area.
Carleton College is a private liberal arts college in Northfield, Minnesota. Founded in 1866, the 200-acre (81 ha) main campus is between Northfield and the approximately 800-acre (320 ha) Cowling Arboretum, which became part of the campus in the 1920s.
St. Olaf College is a private liberal arts college in Northfield, Minnesota. It was founded in 1874 by a group of Norwegian-American pastors and farmers led by Pastor Bernt Julius Muus. The college is named after the King and the Patron Saint Olaf II of Norway and is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. It was visited by King Olav in 1987 and King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway in 2011. Queen Sonja of Norway visited the college's campus a second time in 2022 as part of a tour to celebrate the connections between Norway and Minnesota's Norwegian-American community. She participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Special Collections vault at Rølvaag Memorial Library.
The James–Younger Gang was a notable 19th-century gang of American outlaws that revolved around Jesse James and his brother Frank James. The gang was based in the state of Missouri, the home of most of the members.
Norman Woodason Johnson was a mathematician at Wheaton College, Norton, Massachusetts.
Thomas Coleman Younger was an American Confederate guerrilla during the American Civil War and later an outlaw leader with the James–Younger Gang. He was the elder brother of Jim, John and Bob Younger, who were also members of the gang.
Chamberlin Observatory is an astronomical observatory owned and operated by the University of Denver. It is located in Denver, Colorado (US) in Observatory Park. It is named for Humphrey B. Chamberlin, a Denver real estate magnate who pledged $50,000 in 1888 to build and equip the facility.
Joseph Lee Heywood was the acting cashier at the First National Bank of Northfield, Minnesota, when the James-Younger Gang attempted to rob the bank. At the time, Heywood also held positions as Treasurer for the City of Northfield and Treasurer of Carleton College.
Charles Augustus Wheaton (1809–1882) was a businessman and major figure in the central New York state abolitionist movement and Underground Railroad, as well as other progressive causes. He was one of the founders of the First Congregational Church in Syracuse, which took an abolitionist stand, and was part of the Vigilance Committee that formed in 1850 to resist the Fugitive Slave Law.
Goodsell Observatory is an observatory at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, United States. It was constructed in 1887 and was, at the time, the largest observatory in the state of Minnesota. The Goodsell Observatory and its predecessor, a smaller observatory that opened in 1878, served as a widely consulted timekeeping station, bringing national prominence to Carleton College in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Dr. James Woodward Strong, an American theologian and scholar, was the first president of Carleton College, Minnesota. Despite lifelong illness and injury, Strong was a highly active man throughout his life, juggling multiple professional and personal occupations.
Leonard Blaine "Stub" Allison was an American football, basketball, and baseball coach. He served as the head football coach at the University of Washington (1920), the University of South Dakota (1922–1926), at the University of California, Berkeley (1935–1944), compiling a career college football record of 80–66–5. At California, Allison amassed a 58–42–2 record. In 1937 and 1938, he guided the Bears to back-to-back ten-win seasons, which was at the time the only such occurrence in school history. His 1937 squad, dubbed the "Thunder Team", won the 1938 Rose Bowl, was named the national champions by a number of selectors, and is considered by some sportswriters to have been the best team in school history. While at Washington, Allison also coached the baseball team, in 1920 and 1921, and the basketball team, in 1920.
"Who Shot Mr. Burns?" is a two-part episode of the American animated television series The Simpsons.Part One is the twenty-fifth and final episode of the sixth season and originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on May 21, 1995, while Part Two is the season premiere of the seventh season and aired on September 17, 1995.
Willis Hall is a historic building on the campus of Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, United States. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Wallace William Ulrich was an American professional golfer who played on the PGA Tour in the 1940s and 1950s.
Winthrop Hiram "Win" Smith was an American businessman and investment banker. He was notable as a name partner of Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith.
The Carleton Knights football team represents Carleton College in college football at the NCAA Division III level. The program was started in 1883 and was very successful through the early 1960s, winning over 20 conference championships from 1895 to 1956.
Patton & Fisher was an architectural firm in Chicago, Illinois. It operated under that name from 1885 to 1899 and later operated under the names Patton, Fisher & Miller (1899–1901) and Patton & Miller (1901–1915). Several of its works are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Northfield High School (NHS) is a comprehensive, public high school in Northfield, Minnesota, United States. The school was built in 1966, with additions in 1993 and 1997. The school hosts grades 9-12. As of 2020 there are 1,235 students and 146 faculty members. This includes the schools 85 teaching staff, administrative, custodial, kitchen, and special ed staff. Northfield High School is known to have a rich tradition in academic excellence.
Ames Mill Dam is a 6-foot (2 m) low-head dam located near South Water Street in Northfield city, in southeastern Minnesota, in the United States. It lies on the Cannon River, a tributary of the Mississippi River 35 miles (55 km) south of St. Paul. Ames Mill was originally built as a wooden dam in 1855 and then rebuilt as one of the six concrete dams on the Cannon River in 1919. The Cannon River was central to industrial development in the late 19th century through hydroelectric power production. The presence of dams along the river has influenced geomorphologic changes which affect fish, mussel populations and sediment. The Ames Mill Dam was used to power the Ames Flour Mill; however, it is no longer used for hydroelectric power because the dam is old and nearing the end of its lifespan. Currently the dam serves no functional purpose. The Cannon River is an essential part of Northfield's economic community and the Ames Mill Dam is a part of Northfield's historic identity. The dam is currently owned by Malt-O-Meal, a breakfast cereal company founded in 1919 and headquartered in Northfield, Minnesota.