Minneapolis, Minnesota
City of Minneapolis
Clockwise from top left: Downtown Minneapolis at night, the Mississippi River, Minnehaha Falls, and the skyline from the East Bank.
Clockwise from top left: Downtown Minneapolis at night, the Mississippi River, Minnehaha Falls, and the skyline from the East Bank.
Official seal of Minneapolis, Minnesota
Etymology: Dakota word mni (water) with Greek polis (city)
"City of Lakes", "Mill City", "Twin Cities" (a nickname shared with Saint Paul), "Mini Apple"
En Avant (French: 'Forward')
Location within Hennepin County
Location within Hennepin County
Minneapolis is located in Minnesota
Location within Minnesota
Minneapolis is located in the United States
Location within the United States
Coordinates: 44°58′55″N 93°16′09″W / 44°58′55″N 93°16′09″W / 44.98194; -93.26917(2010)[3]
 • City382,578
 • Estimate 
 • RankUS: 46thMN: 1st
 • Density7,820.80/sq mi (3,019.64/km2)
 • Metro
3,629,190 (US: 16th)[2]
 • CSA
4,014,593 (US: 16th)
Time zoneUTC–6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC–5 (CDT)
ZIP Codes
55401–55488 (range includes some ZIP Codes for Minneapolis suburbs)
Area code(s)612
FIPS code27-43000
GNIS feature ID0655030[5]
Major airportMinneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport
Public transportationwww.minneapolismn.gov

Minneapolis (s/ (About this soundlisten)) is the county seat of Hennepin County[6] and the larger of the Twin Cities, the 16th-largest metropolitan area in the United States.[3] As of 2018, Minneapolis is the largest city in the state of Minnesota and 46th-largest in the United States, with an estimated population of 425,403.[4] The Twin Cities metropolitan area consists of Minneapolis, its neighbor Saint Paul, and suburbs which altogether contain about 3.63 million people, and is the third-largest economic center in the Midwest.[7]

Minneapolis lies on both banks of the Mississippi River, just north of the river's confluence with the Minnesota River, and adjoins Saint Paul, the state's capital. The city is abundantly rich in water, with 13 lakes, wetlands, the Mississippi River, creeks and waterfalls; many connected by parkways in the Chain of Lakes and the Grand Rounds National Scenic Byway. It was once the world's flour milling capital and a hub for timber. The city and surrounding region is the primary business center between Chicago and Seattle. As of 2018, Minneapolis was home to 6 Fortune 500 companies, and the Twin Cities were the fifth-largest hub of major corporate headquarters in the United States.[8] As an integral link to the global economy, Minneapolis is categorized as a global city.[9]

Minneapolis has one of the largest LGBT populations in the U.S. proportional to its overall population.[10] Noted for its strong music and performing arts scenes, Minneapolis is home to both the award-winning Guthrie Theater and the historic First Avenue nightclub. Reflecting the region's status as an epicenter of folk, funk, and alternative rock music, the city served as the launching pad for several of the 20th century's most influential musicians, including Bob Dylan and Prince.[11] Minneapolis has also become noted for its underground and independent hip-hop and rap scenes, producing artists such as Lizzo, Brother Ali, Atmosphere, and Dessa.[12]

Daniel Payne, John Stevens, and George Bowman contributed to replacing Albion, the original name suggested for the city.[13] The name Minneapolis is attributed to Charles Hoag, the city's first schoolmaster, who combined mni, a Dakota Sioux word for water, and polis, the Greek word for city.


Sioux natives, city founded

Little Crow in three quarter height view wearing a headress with three feathers and carrying a spear
Taoyateduta was among the 121 Sioux leaders, who from 1837 to 1851, ceded the land where Minneapolis developed.[14]

Descendants of first peoples, Dakota Sioux were the region's sole residents when French explorers arrived in 1680. For a time, amicable relations were based on fur trading. Gradually, more European-American settlers arrived, competing for game and other resources with the Native Americans. After the Revolutionary War, Great Britain granted the land east of the Mississippi to the United States. In the early 19th century, the United States acquired land to the west from France in the Louisiana Purchase. Fort Snelling, just south of present-day Minneapolis, was built in 1819 by the United States Army. It attracted traders, settlers and merchants, spurring growth in the area. The United States government pressed the Mdewakanton band of the Dakota to sell their land, allowing people arriving from the East to settle there. Preoccupied with the Civil War, the United States government reneged on its promises of cash payments to the Dakota, resulting in hunger, the Dakota War of 1862, internment and hardship. The Minnesota Territorial Legislature authorized Minneapolis as a town in 1856, on the Mississippi's west bank. Minneapolis incorporated as a city in 1867, the year rail service began between Minneapolis and Chicago. It later joined with the east-bank city of St. Anthony in 1872.[15]

Waterpower; lumber and flour milling

Minneapolis developed around Saint Anthony Falls, the highest waterfall on the Mississippi River and a source of power for its early industry. Forests in northern Minnesota were a valuable resource for the lumber industry, which operated seventeen sawmills on power from the waterfall.

Stereoscopic view of Minneapolis, early 20th century

By 1871, the west river bank had twenty-three businesses, including flour mills, woolen mills, iron works, a railroad machine shop, and mills for cotton, paper, sashes, and planing wood.[16] Due to the occupational hazards of milling, six local sources of artificial limbs were competing in the prosthetics business by the 1890s.[17] The farmers of the Great Plains grew grain that was shipped by rail to the city's 34 flour mills. Millers have used hydropower elsewhere since the 1st century B.C.,[18] but the results in Minneapolis between 1880 and 1930 were so remarkable the city has been described as "the greatest direct-drive waterpower center the world has ever seen."[19]

Two men who loaded flour and a bag of flour that says Monahan's Minneapolis and a Pillsbury truck
Loading flour, Pillsbury, 1939

A father of modern milling in America and founder of what became General Mills, Cadwallader C. Washburn converted his business from gristmills to truly revolutionary technology, including "gradual reduction" processing by steel and porcelain roller mills capable of producing premium-quality pure white flour very quickly.[20][21] Some ideas were developed by William Dixon Gray[22] and some acquired through industrial espionage from Hungary by William de la Barre.[21] Charles A. Pillsbury and the C.A. Pillsbury Company across the river were barely a step behind, hiring Washburn employees to immediately use the new methods.[21] The hard red spring wheat that grows in Minnesota became valuable ($0.50 profit per barrel in 1871 increased to $4.50 in 1874),[20] and Minnesota "patent" flour was recognized at the time as the best in the world.[21]

Not until later did consumers discover the value in the bran (which contains wheat's vitamins, minerals and fiber) that "...Minneapolis flour millers routinely dumped" into the Mississippi.[23] After 1883, a Minneapolis miller virtually started a new industry when he began to sell bran byproduct as animal feed.[24] Millers cultivated relationships with academic scientists, especially at the University of Minnesota. Those scientists backed them politically on many issues, such as in the early 20th century when health advocates in the nascent field of nutrition criticized the flour "bleaching" process.[21] At peak production, a single mill at Washburn-Crosby made enough flour for 12 million loaves of bread each day;[25] by 1900, 14.1 percent of America's grain was milled in Minneapolis.[20][21] Further, by 1895, through the efforts of silent partner William Hood Dunwoody, Washburn-Crosby exported four million barrels of flour a year to the United Kingdom.[26] When exports reached their peak in 1900, about one third of all flour milled in Minneapolis was shipped overseas.[26]

Corruption, bigotry, social movements, urban renewal

group of men holding pipes confronting police on street seen from above
Battle between striking teamsters and police, Minneapolis general strike of 1934

Known initially as a kindly physician, Doc Ames led the city into corruption during four terms as mayor just before 1900.[27] The gangster Kid Cann was famous for bribery and intimidation during the 1930s and 1940s.[28] The city made dramatic changes to rectify discrimination as early as 1886 when Martha Ripley founded Maternity Hospital for both married and unmarried mothers.[29]

Different forms of bigotry played roles during the first half of the 20th century. In 1910, a Minneapolis developer started writing restrictive covenants based on race and ethnicity into his deeds. Copied by other developers, the practice prevented minorities from owning or leasing such properties. Though such language was prohibited by state law in 1953 and by the federal Fair Housing Act of 1968, restrictive covenants against minorities remained in many Minneapolis deeds as recently as 2017.[30] The Ku Klux Klan succeeded by entering family life, but effectively was a force in the city only from 1921 until 1923.[31] After Minnesota passed a eugenics law in 1925, the proprietors of Eitel Hospital sterilized about one thousand people at a Faribault state hospital.[32]

From the end of World War I until 1950, Minneapolis was a "particularly virulent" site of anti-semitism. A hate group known as the Silver Legion of America recruited members in the city and held meetings around 1936 to 1938.[33] Answering bigotry against Jewish doctors, Mount Sinai Hospital opened in 1948 as the first hospital in the community to accept members of minority races and religions on its medical staff.[34][33]

A dozen men in hats sitting on public benches facing an avenue of older stone buildings
The Gateway District in 1939 before it was torn down

When the country's fortunes turned during the Great Depression, the violent Teamsters Strike of 1934 resulted in laws acknowledging workers' rights.[35] A lifelong civil rights activist and union supporter, mayor Hubert Humphrey helped the city establish fair employment practices and a human relations council that interceded on behalf of minorities by 1946.[36] In the 1950s, about 1.6% of the population of Minneapolis was nonwhite.[37] Minneapolis contended with white supremacy, participated in desegregation and the civil rights movement, and in 1968 was the birthplace of the American Indian Movement.[38]

During the 1950s and 1960s, as part of urban renewal, the city razed about 200 buildings across 25 city blocks (roughly 40% of downtown), destroying the Gateway District and many buildings with notable architecture, including the Metropolitan Building. Efforts to save the building failed but are credited with sparking interest in historic preservation in the state.[39]

panoramic view of Saint Anthony Falls and the Mississippi riverfront in 1915
Mississippi riverfront and Saint Anthony Falls in 1915. At left, Pillsbury, power plants and the Stone Arch Bridge. Today the Minnesota Historical Society's Mill City Museum is in the Washburn "A" Mill, across the river just to the left of the falls. At center left are Northwestern Consolidated mills. The tall building is Minneapolis City Hall. In the right foreground are Nicollet Island and the Hennepin Avenue Bridge.
Other Languages
Afrikaans: Minneapolis
አማርኛ: ሚኒያፖሊስ
العربية: منيابولس
aragonés: Minneapolis
asturianu: Minneapolis
azərbaycanca: Minneapolis
تۆرکجه: مینیاپولیس
bamanankan: Minneapolis
Bân-lâm-gú: Minneapolis
беларуская: Мінеапаліс
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Мінэапаліс
български: Минеаполис
brezhoneg: Minneapolis
català: Minneapolis
čeština: Minneapolis
Deutsch: Minneapolis
Ελληνικά: Μινεάπολις
emiliàn e rumagnòl: Minneapolis
español: Mineápolis
Esperanto: Mineapolo
euskara: Minneapolis
føroyskt: Minneapolis
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Gĩkũyũ: Minneapolis
ગુજરાતી: મિનેપોલિસ
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Minneapolis
Hawaiʻi: Mineapoli
հայերեն: Մինեապոլիս
Bahasa Indonesia: Minneapolis
Interlingue: Minneapolis
íslenska: Minneapolis
italiano: Minneapolis
ქართული: მინეაპოლისი
Kreyòl ayisyen: Minneapolis, Minnesota
кырык мары: Миннеаполис
latviešu: Mineapolisa
lietuvių: Mineapolis
lingála: Minneapolis
magyar: Minneapolis
македонски: Минеаполис
Malagasy: Minneapolis
Bahasa Melayu: Minneapolis
Nederlands: Minneapolis
norsk nynorsk: Minneapolis
occitan: Minneapòlis
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Minneapolis
Piemontèis: Minneapolis
polski: Minneapolis
português: Minneapolis
română: Minneapolis
русский: Миннеаполис
саха тыла: Миннеаполис
Simple English: Minneapolis
slovenčina: Minneapolis
slovenščina: Minneapolis, Minnesota
ślůnski: Minneapolis
Soomaaliga: Minneapolis
српски / srpski: Минеаполис
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Minneapolis, Minnesota
svenska: Minneapolis
Tagalog: Minyapolis
Taqbaylit: Minneapolis
татарча/tatarça: Миннеаполис
Türkçe: Minneapolis
українська: Міннеаполіс
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: Minnéapolis
vèneto: Minneapolis
Tiếng Việt: Minneapolis
Winaray: Minneapolis
Yorùbá: Minneapolis