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Early image of Minnehaha Falls

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Posted 6 years ago

(854 items)

This is one of the earliest Minnehaha Falls images that I have ever seen.

It is a carte de visite (CDV) and looks to date from the early 1860s. There is no photographer information on the back of the image. The front does have "Minne ha- ha-" in period pencil.

The image shows two men and a child on a wood bridge. The bridge construction or style may help to nail down a specific date on this image.

Reproduction of this image in any form without permission is prohibited.

Enjoy, bellin!



  1. vetraio50 vetraio50, 6 years ago
    On Youtube the's an interesting collage of old and modern photos of the Falls and the bridge appears in a few:
    Photographing Minnehaha Falls.
    It looks like this bridge was replaced with a stone bridge also in the video above.
  2. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Thanks for looking and commenting vetraio.

  3. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Bellin-- I thought that you'd be the first to see and comment on this!

  4. musikchoo musikchoo, 6 years ago
    Great old Photo !! Probably not too many of these Photos out there !!
  5. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Glad to trigger some memories, bellin! I figured you would like the image.

  6. Budek Budek, 6 years ago
    What a beautiful captured moment, thanks for posting it.
  7. walksoftly walksoftly, 6 years ago
    Link to photo dated 1860
  8. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Thanks walksoftly. It confirms that mine is later-- the rectangular railing is not visible in your linked image.

    A better year bracket could probably be determined from the railing in my image.

  9. walksoftly walksoftly, 6 years ago
    Actually a portion to the right of center is visible, they may have been in the process of finishing construction. The photo's could have been taken days apart or several years.
  10. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Yep-- dates on the railing will narrow down my photo. When I have the time, I'll email someone at the park and see if they can shed any light on when the railing was completed and how long it was up.

  11. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Thanks for looking budek and bratjdd.

  12. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
    Hey Scott ... my suggestion is to contact the Minnesota Historical Society here in the Twin Cities ( ). I searched their website and found an early picture of the falls that matches yours ( ); but without a bridge. I suspect the historical society would know when wooden bridge was built and later replaced.
  13. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Thanks for the recommendation, rniederman-- I will try that route and update this site if I get any information back.

  14. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Thanks amber.

  15. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Thanks bratjdd and cultcha.

  16. scottvez scottvez, 4 years ago
    Thanks pat!


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