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All about St Paul, MN
Saint Paul (abbreviated St. Paul) is the capital of the U.S. state of Minnesota and the county seat of Ramsey County. Situated on high bluffs overlooking a bend in the Mississippi River, Saint Paul is a regional business hub and the center of Minnesota’s government. The Minnesota State Capitol and the state government offices all sit on a hill close to the city’s downtown district. One of the oldest cities in Minnesota, Saint Paul has several historic neighborhoods and landmarks, such as the Summit Avenue Neighborhood, the James J. Hill House, and the Cathedral of Saint Paul. Like the nearby and larger city of Minneapolis, Saint Paul is known for its cold, snowy winters and humid summers.
As of the 2021 census estimates, the city’s population was 307,193, making it the 67th-largest city in the United States, the 12th-most populous in the Midwest, and the second-most populous in Minnesota. Most of the city lies east of the Mississippi River near its confluence with the Minnesota River. Minneapolis is mostly across the Mississippi River to the west. Together, they are known as the “Twin Cities” and make up the core of Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area, the third most populous metro in the Midwest.
The Legislative Assembly of the Minnesota Territory established the Town of St. Paul as its capital near existing Dakota Sioux settlements in November 1849. It remained a town until 1854. The Dakota name for where Saint Paul is situated is “Imnizaska” for the “white rock” bluffs along the river. The city has two sports venues: Xcel Energy Center, home to the Minnesota Wild, and Allianz Field, home to Minnesota United.
Saint Paul has a mayor-council government. The current mayor is Melvin Carter III, who was first elected in 2018.
History of St Paul, MN
Burial mounds in present-day Indian Mounds Park suggest the area was inhabited by the Hopewell Native Americans about 2,000 years ago. From the early 17th century to 1837, the Mdewakanton Dakota, a tribe of the Sioux, lived near the mounds after being displaced from their ancestral grounds by Mille Lacs Lake from advancing Ojibwe. The Dakota called the area Imniza-Ska (“white cliffs”) for its exposed white sandstone cliffs on the river’s eastern side. The Imniza-Ska were full of caves that were useful to the Dakota. The explorer Jonathan Carver documented the historic Wakan tipi in the bluff below the burial mounds in 1767. In the Menominee language, St. Paul was called Sāēnepān-Menīkān, which means “ribbon, silk or satin village”, suggesting its role in trade throughout the region after the introduction of European goods.
After the 1803 Louisiana Purchase, U.S Army Lieutenant Zebulon Pike negotiated approximately 100,000 acres (40,000 ha; 160 sq mi) of land from the indigenous Dakota in 1805 to establish a fort. A military reservation was intended for the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers on both sides of the Mississippi up to Saint Anthony Falls. All of what is now the Highland Park neighborhood was included in this. Pike planned a second military reservation at the confluence of the St. Croix and Mississippi rivers. In 1819, Fort Snelling was built at the Minnesota and Mississippi confluence. The 1837 Treaty with the Sioux ceded all tribal lands east of the Mississippi to the U.S. government. Chief Little Crow V moved his village, Kaposia, from south of Mounds Park across the river a few miles onto Dakota land. Fur traders, explorers, and settlers came to the area for the fort’s security. Many were French-Canadians who predated American pioneers buy some time. A whiskey trade flourished among the squatters and the fort’s commander evicted them all from the fort’s reservation. Fur trader turned bootlegger “Pig’s Eye” Parrant, who set up business just outside the reservation, particularly irritated the commander. By the early 1840s, a community had developed nearby that locals called Pig’s Eye (French: L’Œil du Cochon) or Pig’s Eye Landing after Parrant’s popular tavern. In 1842, a raiding party of Ojibwe attacked the Kaposia encampment south of St. Paul. A battle ensued where a creek drained into wetlands two miles south of Wakan Tipi. The creek was thereafter called Battle Creek and is today parkland. In the 1840s-70s the Métis brought their oxen and Red River Carts down Kellogg Street to Lambert’s landing to send buffalo hides to market from the Red River of the North. St. Paul was the southern terminus of the Red River Trails. In 1840, Pierre Bottineau became a prominent resident with a claim near the settlement’s center.
In 1841, Catholic missionary Lucien Galtier was sent to minister to the French Canadians at Mendota. He had a chapel he named for St. Paul built on the bluff above the riverboat landing downriver from Fort Snelling. Galtier informed the settlers that they were to adopt the chapel’s name for the settlement and cease the use of “Pigs Eye”. In 1847, New York educator Harriet Bishop moved to the settlement and opened the city’s first school. The Minnesota Territory was created in 1849 with Saint Paul as the capital. The U.S. Army made the territory’s first improved road, Point Douglas Fort Ripley Military Road, in 1850. It passed through what became St. Paul neighborhoods. In 1857, the territorial legislature voted to move the capital to Saint Peter, but Joe Rolette, a territorial legislator, stole the text of the bill and went into hiding, preventing the move.
Demographics of St Paul, MN
The earliest known inhabitants from about 400 A.D. were members of the Hopewell tradition who buried their dead in mounds (now Indian Mounds Park) on the river bluffs. The next known inhabitants were the Mdewakanton Dakota in the 17th century who fled their ancestral home of Mille Lacs Lake in central Minnesota in response to the westward expansion of the Ojibwe Nation. The Ojibwe later occupied the north (east) bank of the Mississippi River.
By 1800, French-Canadian explorers came through the region and attracted fur traders to the area. Fort Snelling and Pig’s Eye Tavern also brought the first Yankees from New England and English, Irish, and Scottish immigrants who had enlisted in the army and settled nearby after discharge. These early settlers and entrepreneurs built houses on the heights north of the river. The first wave of immigration came with the Irish, who settled at Connemara Patch along the Mississippi, named for their home, Connemara, Ireland. The Irish became prolific in politics, city governance, and public safety, much to the chagrin of the Germans and French who had grown into the majority. In 1850, the first of many groups of Swedish immigrants passed through Saint Paul on their way to farming communities in the northern and western regions of the territory. A large group settled in Swede Hollow, which later became home to Poles, Italians, and Mexicans. The last Swedish presence moved up Saint Paul’s East Side along Payne Avenue in the 1950s.
Of people who specified European ancestry in the 2005–07 American Community Survey of St. Paul, 26.4% were German, 13.8% Irish, 8.4% Norwegian, 7.0% Swedish, and 6.2% English. There is also a visible community of people of Sub-Saharan African ancestry, representing 4.2% of the population. By the 1980s, the Thomas-Dale area, once an Austro-Hungarian enclave known as Frogtown (German: Froschburg), became home to Vietnamese people who had left their war-torn country. A settlement program for the Hmong diaspora came soon after, and by 2000, the Saint Paul Hmong were the largest urban contingent in the United States. Mexican immigrants have settled in Saint Paul’s West Side since the 1930s, and have grown enough that Mexico opened a foreign consulate in 2005.
The majority of residents claiming religious affiliation are Christian, split between the Roman Catholic Church and various Protestant denominations. The Roman Catholic presence comes from Irish, German, Scottish, and French Canadian settlers, who in time were bolstered by Hispanic immigrants. There are Jewish synagogues such as Mount Zion Temple and relatively small populations of Hindus, Muslims, and Buddhists. The city has been dubbed “paganistan” due to its large Wiccan population.
You may be VA Home Loan Eligible if:
- You meet the minimum active service requirements (vary by active-duty dates, wartime & peacetime periods).
- You are the spouse of an American Veteran and meet the requirements.
To obtain a Certificate Of Eligibility, you must have been discharged under conditions other than dishonorable and meet the service requirements. Our VA home loan Minnesota specialists can help you obtain your Certificate of Eligibility as we go through your VA Home Loan process together.
VA Home Loan Benefits:
- $0 Downpayment Option – No downpayment is required for a VA Mortgage.
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A VA Mortgage is one of the most popular paths to becoming a homeowner. The cost savings can be substantial – A program designed specifically to benefit the American military.
Working with Refined Lending:
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We are staffed with VA home loan specialists who take pride in making your home purchase as smooth as possible because you deserve it.
VA Home Loan Benefits Include:
Purchase your home with 0% down
That’s right! You can purchase or refinance at 100% of the home’s value!
No monthly mortgage insurance
VA Loans don’t require mortgage insurance no matter how much deposit you put down!
Credit scores as low as 560
This means it’s possible you will be approved with less than stellar credit!