The Twin Cities, as the name says, are indicative of the two largest cities: Minneapolis and St. Paul. These two cities, built around the rivers Mississippi, Minnesota and St. Croix Rivers, are the hub of urban and industrial activities. Minneapolis is the largest populated city in the state and St. Paul, the second largest city in area in the state, is the 32nd state capital.

There has been enough evidence of opposition between the two cities ever since they were founded. Both cities have been noticed to follow up each other in terms of progress and development. Originally, in the era of early 19th century, this rivalry would occasionally erupt into violence, though this not the case anymore. In the late 19th and 20th centuries, this enmity had intensified so much so that a practicing laborer in one city was often refused work in the other.

This unproductive rivalry has now fortunately ceased, and only healthy sense of competition prevails. Since 1961, it has become common to refer to the Twin Cities collectively as Minnesota.

1. Minneapolis:

The first major presence of The United States military was in Minneapolis. Fort Snelling is of major value as far as the origin of the city is considered, and it is also said to trigger the growth of the same.

Most of the early industrial development of the city in the 19th century was largely owed to St. Anthony Falls, a natural major waterfall, because of the intensity of power produced by it. Various industries like the sawmilling industry and the flour industry were at the peak of their activities in the late 18th century.

The trading of grain in this city started in 1881 by The Minneapolis Chamber of Commerce, which was later renamed to The Minneapolis Grain Exchange in 1947. This business flourished and aided farmers in getting the best prices for their crops like wheat, oats and corn.

The University of Minnesota, 1851, was established as a preparatory school seven years before Minnesota was declared a state. The university is in function for over a hundred years now spanning over several buildings on Nicollet Island.

2. St. Paul:

The city of St. Paul was well known as a frontier town or better still, as a railroad town, for more than a hundred years before it gained its present status as the commercial and influential state of capital.

Lambert’s Landing, a geographically convenient place to unload commercial boats coming upriver, is where this city has developed and flourished. The Mississippi River valley also has stones lined on both its sides. It is because of these features too that St. Paul has managed to gain recognition as a trade and transport center. It is one of the most popular urban hubs known by foreigners.

This city is home of the West Side, and is named so since it falls on the west of the Mississippi River. St. Paul extended its area to cover West Side in 1874.

Now bustling with 3rd and 4th generation immigrants, St. Paul also boasts of Hamline University established in 1854. Currently located in St. Paul, this university was initially opened in Red Wing, Minnesota. St. Thomas, established in 1885 and originally all-male, became a Liberal Arts College in 1894.

Thinking about school? Read this article about some top Twin Cities schools like the U of M.

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