1889-1905: Minneapolis City Hall

NowhereMan

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Minneapolis City Hall, circa 1900

781px-Minneapolis_City_Hall_circa_1900.jpg


Look closely; was this building buried at one time?

From Heritage Preservation > Landmarks & Historic Districts:

Address: 315 4 th Street South

Neighborhood: Downtown West

Construction Date: 1889-1905

Contractor: Unknown

Architect: Long and Kees

Architectural Style: Richardsonian Romanesque

Historic Use: Public – City Hall/Courthouse

Current Use: Public - Government

Date of Local Designation: 1977

Date of National Register Designation: 1974

Area(s) of Significance: Architecture, Politics

Period of Significance: 1889-

Historic Profile: Only four years after Minnesota was granted statehood in 1858, Minneapolis had outgrown its municipal headquarters on Bridge Square. By 1887, C.H. Pettit, a representative in the Minnesota legislature, was already behind an effort to create a joint city and county Municipal Building Commission to finance a building. The Minneapolis architecture firm of Long and Kees won a design competition, modeling their design after the Allegheny County Courthouse in Pittsburgh, built earlier in 1883 by Henry Hobson Richardson. Originally estimated to cost $2,000,000, the final construction expenditures exceeded $3,500,000. The impressive rusticated pink Ortonville granite structure occupies an entire city block between 3 rd and 4 th Avenues and 4 th and 5 th Streets. The massive 5-story building is 100 feet tall with a clock chime tower that soars 365 feet above the ground. When the clock was added in 1916, it was heralded as the largest public timepiece in the world. The exterior, with arched entryways, turrets, and steep roof pavilions, exhibits Romanesque design features. The 4 th Street entrance leads into a five-story atrium. The stained glass window skylight illuminates the marble walls and ceremonial staircase. At the center of the atrium sits a massive statue of the "Father of the Waters," donated to Minneapolis in 1906. Also noted as the first "elastic" building in the country, the Municipal Building was engineered so that the floors could be remodeled independently. When the building first opened, there was enough surplus room to lease out the Second and Third floors to private businesses. Municipal services, however, expanded so quickly more room was needed. Between 1946 and 1949, a four-story addition was inserted into the open center court, closing the 4 th Street atrium. Other alterations to the building occurred in 1950 when the terra cotta roof was replaced with sheet copper and when the Council chambers were remodeled from a three-story room to a one-story room. In 2002, an extensive rotunda refurbishing job was undertaken, cleaning the marble, cartouches, and stained glass windows.

mpls city hall, google earth.jpg
 

KorbenDallas

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It's hard to look closer with what we have. I doubt that this specific building was buried. The one which (hypothetically) stood there before, could be. I start to think that a lot of the newer old buildings were built using older buildings for foundations.

The attic of the City Hall and Courthouse before its completion.
minneapolis_2.jpg

The largest block of granite, weighing 23 tons, caps the archway to the basement access entry. All the building’s granite was brought from Ortonville, Minnesota.
  • This is probably not a natural chunk of granite. It looks cast to me. 23 ton part, which is like 1/3 of the M1 Abrams tank is also interesting.
huge_rock.jpg

This artist’s sketch commemorates the cornerstone’s laying, one of three public celebrations during the building’s twenty years to construct.
  • Would love to see the actual photograph of this event. Find it somewhat suspicious we do not appear to have one. At least my search did not produce anything.
cornerstone.jpg

There are a few additional photographs to be seen at the below link:
What makes me think that the job (part, or all) was performed after the 19th century event are the below "grotesques."

41 faces are carved into marble columns .
grotesques.jpg

They’re known as “grotesques,” and you’ll find them in the marble columns on the ground floor near the elevators.
  • I think these faces symbolize people dying in the mud. I have seen similar art in the art pertaining to Italy and Russia.
  • I think 41 could be symbolic of something. Could it be 1841 as a day of the catastrophic event? Fits the time frame IMHO.
  • I also do not think that there is anything natural in this marble.

Wiki page:

Could be Important
We know that the construction of this building started in 1889, and finished in 1905. Any image of this building prior to 1889 would be rather interesting. Where could we look for the Minneapolis City Hall building?

For example... why do we have a completed City Hall building in this 1891 Bird's View Map. I think it was created in 1891 and published in 1892.
  • Map of the city of Minneapolis in 1891 which is drawn using a bird's eye view, includes list to find 54 Minneapolis businesses and buildings.
  • Essentially, when was this "city hall" really built?
  • Are we supposed to have the second tower in the back?
1891_city_hall.jpg


Minneapolis Growth Rate
minneapolis_population.jpg

From the above "Bird's Eye View"
In 12 years between 1880 and 1892 they had to accommodate about 12,750 newcomers a year. Now take a pick at this 1891 Bird's Eye View of Minneapolis one more time. How much time do you think it should have taken its population to build that? In 1865 they only had 8k people.
kd_separator.jpg

KD: In my modest opinion this building was up and running in 1890-91. I found another 1890 building on the above "Bird's Eye View" which makes very little sense. I will start a separate thread for it. It was the first building I looked into a bit, besides the OP mentioned one.

P.S. Funny, but this City Hall resembles a certain Duluth, MN high school mentioned in this thread.

 

jd755

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You are comparing chalk to cheese. Not that any of the claims for build duration stack up.
The city hall is a fully serviced structure designed from the get go, one presumes, as an office building. Ergo lots and lots of smallish and biggish rooms with corridors, utilities etc etc, you know the sort of things these buildings are used for so must contain and dare I say it, built to last.

The expo building is essentially empty by comparison as it is an exhibition hall with smaller exhibitions halls within. Utilities and internal services are much less and dare I say it again, was not built to last.

So many Mineapolis threads appearing now which confuses the hell out of me so what follows may well be on the wrong one but hey ho.

The building torn down for the expo building construction was the Winslow Hotel "one of Minneapolises oldest buildings" apparently.
And no wonder it came down its horrible enough to be taken for the crap that is put up today. 'Tartarian' it ain't unless there was another curently unknown culture on the land of America.
Industrial Exposition Building, Minneapolis | MNopedia

LEAP DAY BONUS EDITION – Reception for the 2nd Minnesota Regiment at the Winslow Hotel – February 29, 1864 | Museum Collections Up Close : MNHS.ORG


4271ba93cdc59a00efc6f81ac6629b5c.jpg
 

KorbenDallas

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In reference to 41 grotesques in the post above.

The Biblical Meaning of 41
To write "41" in Hebrew, they use two Hebrew letters, mem and aleph. The mem means water, and the aleph means an ox.

The Hebrew numbers from 41-49 are all signified by water (mem) in some way. The series of the 40's generally have to do with a flow of events or a flow of time.

When paired with the aleph, the ox signifies strength or that which is first, since it is also the first letter of the alphabet. In this case, paired with water, it signifies a strong flow of water, a rushing stream, which can separate people on either side of the river.

Source:
 

Red Bird

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In reference to 41 grotesques in the post above.

The Biblical Meaning of 41
To write "41" in Hebrew, they use two Hebrew letters, mem and aleph. The mem means water, and the aleph means an ox.

The Hebrew numbers from 41-49 are all signified by water (mem) in some way. The series of the 40's generally have to do with a flow of events or a flow of time.

When paired with the aleph, the ox signifies strength or that which is first, since it is also the first letter of the alphabet. In this case, paired with water, it signifies a strong flow of water, a rushing stream, which can separate people on either side of the river.

Source:
Well it rained for 40 days and nights before the flood ((plus other waters) perhaps 41 has something to do with standing strong through/after the flood. Meaning the buildings themselves or the actual builders and their bull god
 

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