Minneapolis in Hennepin County, Minnesota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Power on the East Side
— Saint Anthony Falls Heritage Trail —
Hydroelectricity became the leading industry on the east bank early in the twentieth century. The Minneapolis General Electric Company constructed a station on Main Street in 1894-95 to supply power for the city's electric street lights. Other plants were built to provide power to the fast-growing electric streetcar system. A lower dam and hydroelectric station were constructed in 1897-98 to capture the drop of rapids below the falls, soon followed by a coal-burning steam plant just upstream (1903). In 1908, a hydroelectric plant was built on Hennepin Island. The first Main Street Power Station burned in 1911,
Electric streetcars gave way to buses in the 1950s, and demand for hydroelectricity to run the city's transit systems came to an end. One by one, the large riverside plants were adapted and changed. The 1903 plant near the east end of the Stone Arch Bridge was sold to the Northern States Power in 1954, then to the University of Minnesota in 1983 to provide steam heat for university buildings. The Lower St. Anthony Plant washed away in 1987. On Hennepin Island, Northern States Power Company continues to run the only hydro-powered facility still in operation at the falls. Hydroelectricity produced at that plant today serves about 9,000 homes in the city of Minneapolis.
Erected by St. Anthony Falls Heritage Board.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Railroads & Streetcars • Waterways & Vessels.
Location. 44° 59.038′ N, 93° 15.263′ W. Marker is in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in Hennepin County. Marker is on Southeast Main Street west of Southeast 3rd Avenue, on the left when traveling west. Marker is located beside the sidewalk, directly in front of the St. Anthony Falls Hydro Project Office. Touch for map. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Falls That Built the City (within shouting distance of this marker); Franklin Steele (within shouting distance of this marker); Main Street Builds (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Pillsbury A Mill (about 500 feet away); The Whirlpool (about 700 feet away); a different marker also named The Pillsbury A Mill (about 700 feet away); The Ard Godfrey House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Symbols on the Skyline (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Minneapolis.
Also see . . .
1. St. Anthony Falls Hydroelectric Development (Wikipedia). St. Anthony Falls in Minneapolis, Minnesota, is the only natural falls on the Mississippi River. Since almost the beginning of settlement in the area by European descendants, the St. Anthony Falls have been used for waterpower. Hydroelectric production started very early in 1881, and the companies that owned the waterpower rights encouraged or developed three early major hydroelectric plants 1894/1911, 1895 and 1908. One of the historic St. Anthony Falls plants is still operating. (Submitted on August 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. Hydroelectricity in Minneapolis, September 5, 1882. (Submitted on August 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Credits. This page was last revised on August 31, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 56 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on August 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.