At a recent closing on a home in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis the buyer noted that the legal description was the 'Fairground Addition'... which prompted a lively discussion where we learned this neighborhood was once the site of King's Fair, held from 1877 through 1882 before the Minnesota State Fair found its permanent home in 1885.
These Minneapolis fairgrounds included an amphitheater, exhibition halls and a racetrack. The racetrack is outlined in red on the map below, and the train running along Hiawatha Avenue is also highlighted in red... a precursor to the present-day LRT. I love the poster above showing women horseback riders, announcing 'THE GREATEST EQUESTRIENNE CONTEST OF THE WORLD!" As it that wasn't enough excitement, President Rutherford B. Hayes visited the fair in 1878, and in 1881 they launched an impressive hot air balloon with the intention of flying to the East coast but it didn't even make it to Wisconsin.
The 19th century fairgrounds extended from 24th Avenue on the west to 30th Avenue on the east, between Franklin Avenue on the north to 24th Street on the South... including the site of present-day Matthews Park and Seward Montessori Elementary School where the neighborhood has come together to celebrate with a current-day King's Fair.
Learn more about the history of the Seward neigborhood, one of the oldest in the city of Minneapolis, and King's Fair in the YouTube video linked below. This is the same 'Colonel' King for whom the Kingfield neighborhood and King's highway of the East Harriet neighborhood are named.
Sharlene Hensrud, Seward and Kingfield Neighborhood Realtor
- Seward Neighorhood... Minneapolis Biker's Paradise and Walker's Dream!
- Birchwood Cafe... keeping traditions of freshness and community alive
- Kingfield neighborhood's Sun Street Breads... named one of the best new bakeries in America
- Why does Dupont Ave become King's Highway in the East Harriet neighborhood?