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 HARRIET BISHOP, FIRST YEARS OF MINNESOTA

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Harriet Bishop, First Years of Minnesota

Historical sketchesof the early years of Minnesota

Description

The lure of land and adventure brought many pioneers to Minnesota before the Civil War. This database is a brief history of these early years by Harriet Bishop, a pioneer from New England. She came to the territory in 1847 and established a school in St. Paul where she taught English and French, among other subjects. Researchers will find brief narratives of the first white settlers, the establishment of Fort Snelling, and the growth of the state in the 1850s. It is intended to aid researchers in understand the larger context in which ancestors may have lived and can be a helpful source of information.

Extended Description

Harriet E. Bishop (1817-1883) emigrated to Minnesota from New England in 1847. She was recruited by Catherine Beecher's Board of National Popular Education to establish a school in St. Paul, Minnesota and to serve as its first formal teacher, reaching students of French, English, Swiss, Sioux, Chippewa, and African-American backgrounds. Her book, Floral Home, is divided into three components: "Early Sketches," "Later Settlements," and "Further Developments." "Early Sketches" provides accounts of the earliest known white explorers and settlers to the region and discusses the source of the Mississippi River as well as the establishment of Fort Snelling. "Later Settlements" encompasses the period from about 1835-1850 and includes her own arrival. "Further Developments" covers the period after 1850 that saw an explosion of growth in Minnesota. Bishop describes the region's culture, its varied population, its geography and land-use, its natural resources, and the development of its religious, educational, and governmental institutions. There are comments upon the progress of St. Paul, St. Anthony's Falls, St. Croix Falls, Stillwater, and Minneapolis and Minnesota's formation into a territory. Bishop also relates many encounters with the Chippewa and the Sioux [Dakotas] and offers insights about how vastly different cultures co-existed on the frontier. She includes several poems about topics of local significance, some without attribution.
RELATED DATABASES
 •  Frank Moore, Reminiscences of St. Paul, Minnesota  Reminiscences of Pioneer Days in St. Paul from the perspective of a newspaper writer.
 •  Minnesota, 1870  Promotional literature for the state of Minnesota including pictures and maps in 1870
 •  William Folsom, Fifty Years in the Northwest  Autobiography of a state legislator and pioneer from Maine
 •  Jane Swisshelm, Letters of an Abolitionist  Letters written by Jane Swisshelm regarding the abolitionist cause and feminist issues
 •  Henry Sibley, Autobiography  Unfinished autobiography of Minnesota's first governor, Henry Sibley
 •  E. S. Seymour, Sketches of Minnesota  Collection of sketches describing Minnesota as the "New England of the West."
 •  Hampshire, England: Parish and Probate Records  A collection of parish and probate records in England and Wales, from the 1500s to the 1800s.
 •  Bill Ledyard, Health Benefits of Minnesota  Narrative describing the beneficial elements of Minnesota's character and climate
 •  Minnesota Guide, 1869  A hand Book of Information for the Travelers, Pleasure Seekers and Immigrants to Minnesota
 •  Kingston Parish, Virginia Register, 1749-1827  Parish records from Mathews County, Virginia between 1749 and 1827





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