"Minneapolis - City of Water" Top 5 Page for this destination Minneapolis by emoja

Minneapolis Travel Guide: 948 reviews and 1,711 photos

The land from which the city of Minneapolis now rises originally belonged to the Dakota Indians, although the Ojibwe (Chippewa)were very close by. This land later passed through French, Spanish and English rule before finally becoming part of the United States in 1803 as part of the Louisiana Purchase.

Hennepin County, which contains Minneapolis, was named after Father Louis Hennepin, a Belgian Friar. He explored the area in the late 1600s and wrote a book about his experiences here when he returned to Europe.

The name Minneapolis derives from the Dakota Indian word for laughing waters = Minnehaha, and the Greek word for city = polis. Minne-apolis. The literal translation then is 'city of water.' It is the only city name in the entire U.S. that is a combination of Native American and Greek words.

The complete word Minnehaha is still in use - we have the Minnehaha Falls, and an avenue named Minnehaha.

Minneapolis sprouted off the banks of the Mississippi River. Our economy was originally based around flour and textile mills. Until the 1930s, Minneapolis led the world in flour production. Many of the old mills still remain along the river and have been converted to condominiums and a museum.

The first elite class in Minneapolis was, of course, the owners of the flour and textile mills. They branched out from downtown Minneapolis and began building mansions in the late 1800s in the area now known as Loring Park/ Loring Heights. The mansions on this page are all built in that era, and all by factory owners. I'm lucky enough to live in the same neighborhood as these beautiful homes.

Today, the Minneapolis metro area has the 15th largest economy in the country. We are lucky to have our hands in such diverse industries that if one fails, the others quickly pick up the slack.

Minneapolis is incredibly diverse as well - our largest immigrants were originally Scandinavian, but take a stroll down Nicollet Avenue today and you will pass Hmong, Somalian, Puerto Rican, Vietnamese, Chinese, Ugandan, Mexican, Haitian, Russian, Tanzanian and Native American, among many others.

Minneapolis is a truly beautiful city with a rich history and its own culture. Drop by when you get a chance (although it's always better to come in the summertime ;-).

  • Intro Updated Jun 22, 2005
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Reviews (23)

Comments (9)

  • Feb 28, 2010 at 7:27 AM

    People like you create the neighborhood that you live in no one else

  • MendyUSA's Profile Photo
    Nov 15, 2009 at 2:39 PM

    Obviously bitter after being towed during a snow emergency.

  • RickinDutch's Profile Photo
    Feb 27, 2009 at 5:40 PM

    Birthday greetings from Alaska! OK, I know you're a busy mom now, but are these nightclub tips still good? Passing thru in a month or so - going to Duluth to visit a friend.

  • weanor's Profile Photo
    May 15, 2008 at 3:11 AM

    Thanks. This was very helpful.

  • gregoryr1m's Profile Photo
    Jul 29, 2007 at 9:37 AM

    Like the restaurant tips. You spend time in Eat Street.

  • funnybeee's Profile Photo
    Jul 13, 2006 at 5:29 PM

    Currently visiting Mpls and your tips are very helpful! I already took the bus and yes it is great, I have no bad experiences at all. Thanks! Beee

  • caffeine_induced78's Profile Photo
    Aug 7, 2005 at 8:36 PM

    This is great page. Very informative and excellent writing. I have been here once and loved this city, I've even thought about moving here. So much more for me to see.

  • DesertRat's Profile Photo
    Apr 26, 2005 at 10:07 AM

    You left the nasty bits out about the bus system: if you have to transfer, it's virtually always downtown, so getting from Golden Valley to St. Louis Park, for example, is agonizingly long and involved. Lousy system in my view.

  • mapakettle's Profile Photo
    Feb 14, 2005 at 11:44 PM

    I have been to Minneapolis many times, but I'm embarrased to say I never got much further than The Mall of America and the airport, which I realize is Bloomington. Welcome to VT. Pa

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