NEWS & VIEWS OF PHILLIPS SINCE 1976
Thursday November 21st 2019

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November 2019 edition of The Alley

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Celebrate 45 Years of The Alley Newspaper

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Give to the Max

Can’t attend The Alley Newspaper event on Friday, November 8th
but want to still help do your part to support the newspaper and
community journalism?

Contribute to
Alley Communications
online at GiveMN
or send a check to
P.O. Box 7006, Mpls.,
MN 55407

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November Phillips West News

Phillips West Neighborhood Events: www.phillipswest.info

By CRYSTAL WINDSCHITL

Thursday, November 7th, 6-7 pm

Phillips West Monthly Community Meeting!

Join your neighbors and other Community Partners for updates from Local City Government and Minneapolis Police! Meeting will take place at the Center for Changing Lives Building in the Centrum Room (2400 Park Avenue). Free parking is available in the rear of building off of Oakland Avenue. Free Jakeeno’s Pizza Dinner will be provided! If you would like more information or would like to get involved in the neighborhood please contact Crystal at 612-879-5383 or email her at pwno2005@yahoo.com

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Transit ‘Tis the Season – For New Projects!

By JOHN CHARLES WILSON

If you go to the Mall of America by bus or light rail, you either know or soon will know that the new Mall of America Transit Center is now open. A Grand Opening celebration will be held in November 2019. Check https://www.metrotransit.org for more details.

In other news, Metro Transit is holding public forums to discuss plans for connecting bus service to the new Orange Line which will run on I-35W starting in 2021.

These forums will be held:

Wednesday, November 6
4:00-6:00 pm
Woodlake Nature Center

6710 Lake Shore Dr. S., Richfield, near bus lines 4,
515, and 558.

Thursday, November 7
4:00-6:00 pm
Martin Luther King Recreation Center

4055 Nicollet Ave., Minneapolis, on bus line 18.

Thursday, November 14
4:30-6:30 pm
Volunteers Enlisted to Assist People (VEAP)
9600 Aldrich Ave. S., Bloomington, near bus lines
18 and 535.

Please consider coming to one of these forums if you have the time and interest.

A friend of mine recently asked if Metro Transit has regular public meetings. The answer is complex. Metro Transit itself is a service provided by the Metropolitan Council; it is not in and of itself a political entity. (Historically, it was, when it was called the Metropolitan Transit Commission, but it was absorbed by the Metropolitan Council in the
mid-1990s.) The Metro Council itself has two full meetings per month, on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays at 4:00pm. The Transportation Committee, which is the most direct overseer of Metro Transit, also meets twice per month, on the 2nd and 4th Mondays, also at 4pm. These meetings are open to the public though not advertised and very few people go. Maybe you should!

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Community Update & Training: Safe Needle Disposal

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Important Community Meeting

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Unregulated, ill-equipped, unfunded “Baby Farms” filled a void for poor women

Mary Briggs, dies after 21 days of life

Mary Briggs was only 21 days old when she died from diphtheria on February 13, 1916. As tiny as she was, her death had long-lasting consequences for the City of Minneapolis, especially for babies born to mothers living in poverty.

Mary died at 3614 Grand Avenue in what was known as a “baby farm,” a privately owned boardinghouse for unmarried women and their babies. In addition to providing homes for “erring mothers” and “incorrigible girls” who were waiting to give birth, some baby farms served as adoption agencies. One woman advertised her business as a “private home for ladies before and through confinement.” She also advertised babies who were available for adoption—“Two pretty baby girls and a boy.” A few farms cared for children whose parents (usually mothers) had no one to care for their child while they worked. 

The city had a number of ordinances that were intended to ensure the quality of care that the babies received but provided little in the way of resources, so inspections were rare and enforcement of existing laws was virtually nonexistent.

TIM MCCALL

75+ Baby Farm babies buried at Lake & Cedar Cemetery

 Mary was one of more than 75 babies buried in the cemetery who died at addresses that were known to be baby farms. The first that we can identify from cemetery records was May Coffin who died on February 26, 1895, more than 20 years before Mary Briggs. And May was only one of 31 children who died at the baby farm located at 1432 5th Street Northeast. The owner was Hannah Lund who was well known to police and social services in Minneapolis but who nevertheless managed to stay in business. No matter how appalling the care provided by the baby farms, the need for the services that they provided was great, especially by young women with little money and nowhere else to go.

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Marie Sandvik Center

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Book Review Thirty Rooms to Hide In: Insanity, Addiction and Rock ‘n’ Roll in the Shadow of the Mayo Clinic

By DWIGHT HOBBES

Luke Longstreet Sullivan’s memoir, Thirty Rooms to Hide In: Insanity, Addiction and Rock ‘n’ Roll in the Shadow of the Mayo Clinic (University of Minnesota Press), brilliantly written, does not make for particularly pleasant reading. In fact, it’s the kind of the experience, especially being a true story, that, beyond depressing, can make you get up on a grey, drizzling morning, look out the window think about slitting your throat. Sullivan, in this wholly engaging, wryly irreverent, cynically bittersweet account of tragic trials and tribulations, recounts how helplessly he, his five brothers and their mom suffered through years of being ruthlessly abused by dad and husband, a raging drunk whose binges eventually, one might say thankfully, saw him out of their lives and into his grave.

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