Near Hastings in Dakota County, Minnesota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Ignatius Donnelly's Nininger City Home
Just northwest of here, at the bottom of the hill, stood the home of Ignatius Donnelly, author, orator, politician, reformer, and prophet who was easily the best known Minnesotan of his time, both in the state and throughout the world.
Donnelly, a lawyer from Philadelphia, moved west to Minnesota and launched a national campaign to attract settlers to Nininger City, a promising village of more than 500 residents when it was laid out around 1856. After the town melted away during the panic and depression of 1857, Donnelly turned his astonishing energy to politics, serving one term as lieutenant governor and three terms in Congress. For nearly 40 years his restless search for fair and effective social and economic institutions led him to play a role in virtually every agrarian reform movement of the late nineteenth century.
In addition to his fiery campaigns on behalf of farmers and workers, Donnelly wrote several unconventional and widely read books of popular science, including Atlantis, The Great Cryptogram, Ragnarok and Caesar's Column, in which he predicted the collapse of American society in the year 1988.
Donnelly lived at his Nininger City home until his death on January 1, 1901. Despite efforts to save it, the house was dismantled in 1949.
Erected by the Minnesota Historical Society
On November 3, 1981
The 150th Anniversary of Ignatius Donnelly's Birth
Erected 1981 by the Minnesota Historical Society.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Minnesota Historical Society marker series.
Location. 44° 46.168′ N, 92° 54.285′ W. Marker is near Hastings, Minnesota, in Dakota County. Marker is at the intersection of 124th Street East and Historic Donnelly Avenue / Ivanhoe Way, on the right when traveling west on 124th Street East. Touch for map. Marker is at the Nininger Town Hall. Marker is at or near this postal address: 12390 Ivanhoe Way, Hastings MN 55033, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Nininger Historic Site (here, next to this marker); River Habitats (approx. 1.7 miles away); Shaping the River (approx. 2 miles away); Native Cultures (approx. 2.4 miles away); Enjoying the River (approx. 2½ miles away); Living in the Water (approx. 2.7 miles away); Going with the Flow (approx. 2.9 miles away); Downtown Develops (approx. 3.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Hastings.
Also see . . .
1. Ignatius L. Donnelly. Wikipedia entry. "During the 1930s, an organization was formed to lobby for the creation of a state park at Donnelly's home at Nininger near Hastings, Minnesota. The house was still standing in 1939, but the effort failed and the house has since been demolished." (Submitted on May 29, 2013.)
2. Donnelly, Ignatius. Biographical Information. (Submitted on May 29, 2013.)
3. Minnesota Historical Society. The Humor of Ignatius Donnelly. (Submitted on May 29, 2013.)
Categories. • Arts, Letters, Music • Politics • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 29, 2013, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 395 times since then and 52 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on May 29, 2013, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin.