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same land, but it is certain that the white man wiped out almost all fur-bearing animal life in Minnesota.5

In 1818, northeastern Minnesota had become a part of the Wisconsin territory, but when Wisconsin became a state in 1848, Minnesota was left without organized goverment. In 1849, it was proclaimed the Minnesota Territory.

President Zachary Taylor was interested in the new territory, where he himself had served as a young officer, stationed at Fort Snelling. It had been at Snelling, too, that his oldest daughter had married, and in Minnesota that two of his grandchildren had been born.6 Taylor appointed Alexander Ramsay governor of this new territory, whose borders were now more precisely defined. Several names had been proposed for the territory - such as Chippewa, Itasca, Jackson, or Washington - but the original name won final approval, under the spelling proposed in the Stillwater convention of 1848: Minnesota. Upon arriving at his post, the new governor was able to note that his new "capital" consisted of "a dozen partly finished houses and about ten low storage sheds."7 But since peace had been made with the Indians, Minnesota was opened to settlers, and in a six-year period, 1851-57, about 150,000 newcomers arrived. On 11 March 1858, Minnesota became the 32nd state in the Union.

On the Eve of the Finnish Flood to Minnesota

The Civil War, necessitating a concentration of resources for military purposes, slowed down the development of outlying states. Minnesota's contribution to the war effort was not great, but the war made itself felt throughout the state. On 16 April 1861, it was ordered to raise ten companies of soldiers, and thirteen days later they reported for duty at Fort Snelling. On 22 June those ten companies, forming the First Minnesota Regiment, were ordered to the front, and they were cheered as they boarded the steamships War Eagle and Northern Belle and pulled out from St. Paul. Before the war was over, Minnesota had furnished 22,016 men, of whom 635 died in battle and about 2000 died of epidemic diseases.

During the Civil War, Minnesota also witnessed the last act in its wars against the Indians. Poor harvests, poor hunting, as

5. A summary based, inter alia, on Blegen, Theodore C., Building Minnesota, Boston

1938, and Follwell, William W., A History of Minnesota, St. Paul, 1921. 6. Minnesota History. September 1949. p. 189. 7. Minnesota History. September 1949. p. 195.


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