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Minnesota

History

Timber was the territory’s first boom industry, and soon water-powered sawmills arose at Minneapolis, St Paul and Stillwater. Wheat from the prairies also needed to be processed, so the first flour mills were built along the river in the 1820s.

The population boomed in the 1880s, with mass immigration (especially from Scandinavia), development of the iron mines and expansion of the railroads. Since the 1920s depleted forests and larger farms have meant a declining rural population, but industry and urban areas have grown steadily.