History Stories

Our region has a rich history. Some of it’s fascinating and inspiring, some of it not so much. Here you’ll find Greater Mankato Area history stories so you can judge for yourself.

Photo courtesy Maud Hart Lovelace’s Deep Valley by Julie A. Schrader - The Saulpaugh Hotel was located where the City Center Hotel sits today. This photograph shows the main entrance to the hotel as it faces South Front Street with Main Street in the foreground, circa 1925. Originally there was an entrance on the Union Depot and Minnesota River side of the hotel. At that time most patrons arrived by steamboat or railroad. The image was taken from approximately where the south entrance of the Blue Earth County Library sits today. The current City Center Hotel ramp sits where South Front Street met Main Street.

The Grand Old Saulpaugh Hotel

The Saulpaugh Hotel was, from its construction in 1888 until its close in 1964, one of the grand buildings of old Mankato
Photo by Rick Pepper - Aerial view of Veterans Memorial Bridge looking south

Mankato New Construction – Aerial Photo Album

Rick Pepper offers some aerial photos of new construction in Mankato
Civil War Cannons

The Corn Crib Party – Civil War Heroes from Blue Earth County – Part...

On February 15, 1863, Company H of the 2nd Minnesota Infantry made up of soldiers from the Mankato area found themselves in a difficult situation with the most honorable result! This is the record of the men after the war.
Corn Crib

The Corn Crib Party – Civil War Heroes from Blue Earth County

On February 15, 1863, Company H of the 2nd Minnesota Infantry made up of soldiers from the Mankato area found themselves in a difficult situation with the most honorable result!
Snake Oil

One-Woman Show – Historical Reenactor Susan Hynes

You'll find Susan Hynes at all sorts of southern Minnesota events recreating all sorts of historically accurate characters.
Blacksmith forge

Takara Olson – Fire forged

Very few people know what they want to do at a young age. Takara Olson knew she wanted to be a blacksmith and that's exactly what she's doing.
Ice on pond

Ice Cold History – The Era of the Ice Harvesting Industry

Ice harvesting was an important winter crop in southern Minnesota during the late 1800s and early 1900s. Julie Schrader offers insight into this key industry.
Submitted Photo - Lonesome Ron Affolter

Lonesome Ron – The King of the Valley Yodelers

Lonesome Ron Affolter, The King of the Valley Yodelers, is at the center of a large number of history and old west driven events. In the unlikely event that you haven't met him, Grace Brandt provides an introduction.
Photo by Mike Lagerquist - Security Apartments in Mankato. View from intersection of S Broad and E Hickory Streets

ARTchitecture – Security Apartments

The Security Apartments building in Mankato has been standing since 1894 but has seen significant changes over the years.
Photo Courtesy of Blue Earth County Historical Society - R.D. Hubbard House in Mankato

Keepers of the Past – Blue Earth County Historical Society

The Blue Earth County Historical Society specializes in bringing the past to life for the education and enjoyment of the people of the Greater Mankato Area.