Travel with us to the Minneapolis of the roaring 1920s. Although Minneapolis’s history stretches back thousands of years to the Dakotans, we’re taking a very brief look at the period during which our client's home at 5540 33rd Avenue was built. By the 1920s, builders were constructing hundreds of homes across neighborhoods outside of the city center, thanks to over 500 miles of streetcar lines. Thousands of people moved to Minneapolis every year because of the abundance of jobs in the milling and other industries that followed (banking, railroads, etc), doubling the city’s population between 1900 and 1930 to 464,000 residents - about 50,000 more people than today!
Two of the optimistic, hope-filled newcomers were John and Marie Krohn. Having moved to Minneapolis at about 1918, John and Marie bought 5540 33rd Avenue in 1928, about a year after the home was constructed. Marie worked as a starcher for Columbia Laundry (location unknown), and John was a trucker at Minneapolis Milling Company, just down the street at 3501 Hiawatha Avenue. (This mill, now owned by ADM Milling, is still producing almost a million pounds of flour a day!)
John and Marie, along with other Minneapolitans, experienced tremendous change after the stock market crash of 1930. After 10 years of Republican mayors, William Anderson, a Farmer-Labor candidate (a party separate from Democrats at the time), won the 1930 mayoral election alongside the first Farmer-Labor governor Floyd Olson. Mayor Anderson ran on a “law-and-order” platform, echoing constituents’ concern that the disappearance of jobs were fueling the rapid increase in “obscene amusements” and the growth of downtown’s vice district. The mayor took one-step too far, it appears, when he banned a touring New York City theater show. A local theater promoter, Republican A. G. “Buzz” Bainbridge, defeated Anderson in the 1933 election.
Living in Wenonah
Apart from the turbulent times, John and Marie Krohn enjoyed a pleasant life in the Wenonah neighborhood. Like many south Minneapolis neighborhoods, the Wenonah neighborhood takes its name from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s famous poem The Song of Hiawatha. In the poem, which Longfellow claimed is inspired by an Ojibwe legend, Wenonah, the daughter of Nokomis, ignores her mother’s advice and falls in love with Mudjekeewis, the “West Wind,” and together they parent Hiawatha. The Wenonah neighborhood took great pride in its connections to the native population. John and Marie were surrounded by beautiful locations named for the Ojibwe legend – Lake Nokomis, Lake Hiawatha, Minnehaha Falls. Additional, with a streetcar line built on 34th Avenue, the Krohns had easy access across the region, from White Bear Lake to Lake Minnetonka, using the public system.
Check out this charming two-story East Nokomis home and see the stunning updates the current owners have made. I'm sure they'd make John and Marie proud! Join us Saturday, July 14, from 1pm to 3pm, for an Open House and Wine Tasting. Click here to RSVP.