NEWS & VIEWS OF PHILLIPS SINCE 1976
Friday October 23rd 2020

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New Hours for Using Computers

By CARZ NELSON 

Hennepin County Library services during the Coronavirus Pandemic, visit www.hclib. org. All information is accurate as of September 15, 2020 

Franklin Library at 1413 E Franklin Avenue is open for computer use. Call (612) 543- 6925 to make an appointment. The building will remain locked, but staff will let you in at your appointment time. Masks are required and will be provided if you do not bring one. Because of social distancing, staff will be unable to offer computer assistance. You will have access to a desktop computer, Internet, and printing. You will need to bring your own headphones. At this time, Franklin Library is open for computer use ONLY. Other areas and services, including book/DVD checkout, are not available. They will be accepting returns during staffed service hours. 

Franklin Library Computer Hours 

Tuesday & Wednesday 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. 

Thursday 12-8 p.m. 

Friday & Saturday 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. 

Sunday & Monday – closed 

Franklin Library meal pick-up for youth, Thursdays, Noon-2 p.m. For ages 18 and under. Pick up a week worth of free meals. Caregivers can pick up meals for youth who are not present. Meals include: sandwiches, milk, fruit, vegetable, and snack. 

Connect with the library social worker outside Franklin Library, Wednesdays 9am- 5pm: 

• Basic needs (clothing, food, meals, shelter) 

• Chemical Health 

• Disability Services 

• Education & Employment 

• Hennepin County Benefits 

• Housing 

• A listening ear 

• Mental Health Resources 

• Transportation 

LIBRARY UPDATES: 

Grab and Go Library Service at Hosmer Library: Hosmer Library, 347 E 36th St., is open for retrieving holds, limited browsing of materials, checking out items, returning library materials, quick reference support, computer appointments and printing. Meeting rooms, study rooms, children’s play areas, and lounges will not be available for use at this time. Masks are required and will be provided if you don’t bring one. Check the library website for up-to-date service information and hours. 

Homework Help 

Live, virtual tutors are available through Help Now (https://www.hclib.org/ programs/homework-help). 

Physical Materials 

Due dates for physical materials continue to be automatically extended. You are not required to return materials at this time. Libraries are accepting returns during staffed service hours only. Items will be removed from your account after a three-day quarantine. 

Online Library Events: The Virtual Cooking Program is coming soon. This program will feature videos from local kitchens such as Sioux Chef and Green Garden Bakery. Check the library website for dates and times. 

There are a growing number of online library events! Check out the schedule by going online to www.hclib.org and click on “Events”. 

E-BOOKS AND AUDIOBOOKS: 

LIBBY: The Libby app is available for iOS and Android devices and is a streamlined way to access downloadable ebooks and audiobooks from OverDrive. You can check out audiobooks right in the app. You can also read eBooks in the app or send them to your Kindle. 

CLOUD LIBRARY: Find downloadable eBooks for readers of all ages. A reader app is also available for Apple, Android and other devices. 

Ask Us: Have a reference or library account question? Call, text, chat with, or email a library worker. 

https://www.hclib.org/ contact 

Call 612-543-KNOW (5669) to reach library staff by phone. 

MONDAY-THURSDAY 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. 

FRIDAY-SATURDAY 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. 

SUNDAY NOON – 5 p.m. 

ESPAÑOL/SPANISH: Llame o envíe un texto al 651-503-8013 para recibir ayuda en español. 

HMOOB/HMONG: Hu losis text rau lub tsev nyeem ntawv ntawm 612-385-0886 txais kev pab hais lus Hmoob. 

SOOMAALI/SOMALI: Caawimaad Soomaali ah, soo wac ama qoraal (text) usoo dir maktabada 612-235-1339. 

Carz is a Phillips resident and an enthusiastic patron of Hennepin County Library. 

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Tips from a COVID-19 Case Investigator

 By LINDSEY FENNER

 The pandemic has brought into sharp focus all of the inadequacies and inequities of American society. And yet, so many are zoomed in on personal actions and individual rights, based on some blurry idea of “freedom.” While there is much we can each do as individuals to limit risk and exposure to COVID-19, after every single phone call I have with someone who has tested positive, I am struck by the enormous structural failures everyone I talk to has encountered. From testing difficulties, loss of income, confusing communication, mistrust of government, lack of ability to isolate, workplace safety concerns, and on and on, it is clear to me that there is no singular or simple solution to this pandemic. But this doesn’t mean that there is nothing to be done. 

This is where all of you come in. Vote like your life depends on it, because it does. 

Vote for Federal leadership on masking, PPE production, testing, treatment, and vaccines so that we have all of the tools that we need;

Vote for getting politics out of public health, so that experts at the CDC and other public health agencies can do their jobs without political meddling;

Vote for an Occupational Safety and Health Administration that will enact and enforce coronavirus workplace safety standards;

Vote for meaningful economic support for workers and families who are impacted by the pandemic;

Vote for an increased minimum wage so that our lowest paid workers on the frontline of this pandemic can have economic security;

Vote for unions because we know that unionized workplaces are safer;

Vote for reducing the pollution that leads to higher COVID-19 death rates and more severe illness in people who live or grow up in areas overburdened with pollution (like East Phillips);

Vote for a Green New Deal that will slow down climate change and the habitat loss that would be certain to lead to more new viruses and future pandemics;

Vote to support small local businesses, so they are still standing when the pandemic is over;

Vote for Universal Healthcare so that people can afford lifesaving medical care;

Vote for housing, because you can’t stay at home when you don’t have a home;

Vote for more and better affordable housing so that people can isolate and quarantine in less crowded conditions, and lower the risk of the spreading the virus to household members;

Vote for immigration reform, so that undocumented neighborswon’t fear that they will be deported if they test positive for coronavirus;

Vote for criminal justice reform that would reduce prison populations, because the largest coronavirus outbreaks have been in prisons;

Vote for dismantling systemic white supremacy, because structural racism is an underlying health condition that is killing Black, Brown, and Indigenous neighbors in this pandemic and every day.

And after you vote, no matter what happens, keep fighting. This pandemic won’t go away overnight, and neither will the issues that have made it worse. As I write this, 194,000 Americans have died from COVID-19. By the time this is published, that number will be well over 200,000. We need to take the time to mourn, and then, we need to organize.

Lindsey is an East Phillips resident, and is currently working a reassignment doing COVID-19 Case Investigator for local public health. Her opinions are her own.

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Unsheltered Native People Return to Wall of Forgotten Natives

 By Metropolitan Urban Indian Directors

 2020 there was yet another forced eviction of our homeless relatives, mostly Native American, from publicly owned property within the City of Minneapolis. Unfortunately, there was no solution or direction offered to our homeless relatives as to where to go, and so they were left to fend for themselves. Disbanding an encampment without any viable, safe alternatives for these human beings is wholly unacceptable and in reality, disgusting in its disregard for human life. 

With nowhere to go, and acting out of pure desperation, our relatives have once again returned to the former location of the 2018 mass homeless encampment on MnDOT property at the intersection of Hiawatha and Franklin Avenue – known as the “Wall of Forgotten Natives.”

Due to the inaction and lack of accountability from all levels of government it is shameful that we find ourselves in the very same position as we were in two years ago. This is unacceptable. We demand that our elected officials at the city, county, and state levels respond immediately with a coordinated and adequately funded response to best support our relatives living at The Wall, and all unsheltered people in our city and state. 

In a letter sent on behalf of our community from the leadership of the Metropolitan Urban Indian Directors (MUID) to our City of Minneapolis elected officials on August 27, 2020 we demanded that “…the City must relocate the residents to a location where appropriate security, hygiene facilities and social services can be offered…the City cannot simply clear the encampment only to have it reappear on another property. Rather, the City must take the lead in coordinating public and private sector agencies in providing housing, shelter and supportive services to our relatives.” This has not happened. 

Instead, we see the continued lack of leadership being exhibited by the Minneapolis City Council, Hennepin County, and the state of Minnesota to address the most basic needs of their most vulnerable constituents. Our homeless relatives still find themselves purposefully isolated within the margins of government services, as each government entity works hard to shift the responsibility of this crisis away from themselves, treating our people like an unwanted political “hot potato”. The end result is that MUID promotes the well-being, growth and mutual interests of metropolitan American Indian organizations. (https://muidgroup.wixsite.com/muid) Unsheltered relatives are being treated as an unwanted problem not worthy of our elected governments’ time or resources. 

Due to the ongoing lack of leadership, it is falling once again to the community-based organizations of MUID, those organizations allied with MUID, and our community to step into this void and help the Native and non-native people at The Wall by providing immediate assistance, just like in the summer of 2018. Though we stand ready to be a partner in this work, we cannot do this on our own. We need the help and resources of all levels of government and the private sector. 

As our community reminds our public sector representatives for every year, winter will soon be here. We need a plan. We need our elected and appointed officials to do their jobs by leading a coordinated effort between all government agencies from every level to effectively remedy this situation. Empty rhetoric and popular buzzwords of “the woke” is insufficient and an affront to the basic humanity of our people. We are not interested in speeches. We no longer will tolerate “tough talk” with no effort. We need you to be willing to do the work in order to save lives. 

Sadly, the fact remains that the homelessness crisis has not dissipated in any way since the first “Wall of Forgotten Natives” in 2018. In fact, it has become worse because of the economic crisis related to the COVID-19 pandemic and civil unrest following the murder of George Floyd. Sweeping people from camps like sweeping refuse under the rug is not an answer; it is not even humane.

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The Alley October 2020 issue

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“Power is Ever Stealing From the Many to the Few!”

Following is a segment of Chapter 12 of a book entitled: Wendell Phillips, Social Justice, and the Power of the Past 

Edited by A. J. Aiséirthe and Donald Yacovone, Louisiana State University Press, 2016 

This book is the 20th book of the Series: ANTISLAVERY, ABOLITION, AND THE ATLANTIC WORLD, 

R. J. M. Blackett and James Brewer Stewart, 

Series Editors 

Figure 12.3. The “Spirit of Phillips”: Power is ever stealing from the many to the few. The Alley Newspaper, April 1989. 

EXCERPT FROM CHAPTER 12: 

“The Phillips Community of Minneapolis: Historical Memory and the Quest for Social Justice”: 

Pages 339-344 

By David Moore, Harvey M. Winje, and Susan Gust 

in consultation with James Brewer Stewart 

For close to two decades, from 1987 through 2005, our community followed this Wendell Phillips exhortation when uniting in unprecedented solidarity to address the mounting injustices posed by those who tried to dictate the terms of our physical environment. Throughout these particular struggles, we surely did “Call Things by Their Right Names”. The descriptor that best captured what we were up against was “environmental racism.” Thanks to twelve years of uninterrupted protest, conducting our own research and garnering the attention of the media because of our creative techniques, we finally achieved a clear-cut environmental victory, not only for the neighborhood, but for the entire city. But none of this would come to pass until, as Phillips advised us, we had done everything possible to “shame greedy men into humanity.” 

In 1987, the Hennepin County Board, the duly appointed manager of waste for Minnesota’s most populated county, attempted to saddle us with a 10-acre trash and garbage transfer station. Over 10 million dollars had been appropriated by the County Commissioners for this development. Their plan was to consolidate and transport waste from every part of Minneapolis using city compactor garbage trucks making approximately 750 truck trips per day to the proposed garbage transfer facility. From there, the garbage would be transferred to semi-trailer trucks and delivered to the County’s existing garbage incinerator located in downtown Minneapolis. When thirty-five houses and eight businesses were summarily demolished by the forced eminent domain, the community rose, unified by our deep indignation and driven by the imperative to resist. We forced the City to hold widely-publicized (and frequently raucous) open hearings before the Zoning Board. We all came together to battle for the future of our children, not simply to score a victory over oppressors who held political power. Our children surely deserved better than a garbage transfer station in their backyard, we insisted. They most certainly deserved better than an endless succession of rank-smelling garbage trucks rumbling though our streets, generating constant noise and emitting clouds of choking exhaust. Thus began twelve years of uninterrupted agitation, protest, politicking and remarkably ingenious problem-solving throughout which our community sustained unbreakable unity. Wendell Phillips, we are certain, would have applauded. 

For the first time in the history of the Phillips community, homeowners and renters joined in a common cause. We also coalesced into a truly multicultural protest movement with people from every ethnic group “blending with one another like the colors on a pigeon’s neck” (this simile was a Wendell Phillips favorite.) Native Americans, many of them women, played a prominent role as front-line resisters Little Earth of the United Tribes of Minnesota (discussed in detail below), the nation’s largest American Indian public housing complex, sat three blocks from the transfer station’s proposed location. We forced the authorities to hold the public hearings required for the permitting process in the Little Earth gymnasium. At the meetings themselves small Native children waved hand-lettered signs and banners they had made featuring sayings such as: “We may be poor but we are not stupid”; “We are worth more than garbage.” Mothers and grandmothers who had never before attended or spoken in public testified forcefully while condemning the health effects and related dangers being proposed for them and their children. What deeper motives were driving those in authority, these women queried, when they grievously threatened the children of our nation’s First People. 

For more than a decade, the combined impact of incessant protesting, media attention and political arm-twisting kept the transfer station at bay. The conflict turned decisively in our favor, however, once we proposed a solution to the waste management problem that was simply too intelligent and practical for the “those with authority” to turn down. 

After analyzing the same statistics and technical information cited by the “experts” in defense of the transfer station, as well as garbage truck routes and recycling statistics we were able to prove definitively that Hennepin County’s current recycling efforts made the proposed project completely unnecessary. Instead of wasting 10 million dollars, Hennepin County could, at minimal cost, position itself as a national leader in the “greening” of American cities- and the people of Phillips showed them how to do it. Our initial struggles against the transfer station had required several of us to immerse ourselves in the theories and practices of developing a “green economy” and the realities of environmental racism. We sought additional knowledge and advice from experts in other environmentally distressed, racially polarized cities such as Los Angeles. We learned, much to our delight, that there was actually “gold in the garbage.” Around 33 percent of the solid waste stream in Minneapolis was made up of construction materials, much of it reusable. Instead of paying to get rid of refuse, we could be generating serious income! 

Thus was born the Green Institute, which in 1995 opened The Re-Use Center, a 26,000 square foot facility set in a low end, 1950’s-style shopping center located at one of the key commercial edges of Phillips community. The enterprise brought many befits to our community that went far beyond generating profits from discarded building materials. The Reuse-Center created jobs for about a dozen local residents, offered home improvement classes, conducted environmental education workshops for local elementary schools and, closely mimicking the organization of a Home Depot store, sold an amazing range and quantity of recycled building materials. In all these creative endeavors, as Wendell Phillips might well have pointed out, power itself was now being recycled from “the few” who had attempted to victimize our community back into the hands of “the many” where it surely belongs and where , as the citizens of Phillips have shown, it does the most good. 

Had the people of Phillips achieved environmental justice? Not yet. A few years after our battle against the transfer station, we learned in 2003 of a soil sample study demonstrating that our neighborhood was awash in arsenic poison emanating from an abandoned industrial site. The neighborhood promptly labeled the site “Arsenic Triangle” which describes the geometry of its borders. Right away The Alley opened an all-out campaign to educate its readers and to mobilize them around demands that “the powers that be” deliver effective solutions. Wendell Phillips captured perfectly our journalistic motivations when reflecting on his own distinguished career: “We came into the world to give truth a little jog onward and help our neighbors’ rights” (We display this quotation on our newspaper’s masthead.) 

Buoyed by this historical connection we filled The Alley with a volley of in-depth pieces explaining the problem and spotlighting the government agencies responsible for solving it. Between January 2005 and November 2007 we published nine articles about arsenic contamination that demanded action by “those in charge.” We publicized each and every community meeting of which there were dozens, printed letters from community members expressing anger and concern, and composed pungent editorials criticizing government bureaucrats for inadequate responses. All the while we kept fully in mind the fact that in 1852 Wendell Phillips had delivered a compelling speech, titled Public Opinion, in which he stressed that agitators who expose corruption and denounce its practitioners are, in truth, democracy’s most vital defenders. Our actions throughout the struggle to clean up “Arsenic Triangle” gave substance to his thoughts. 

The resolution of this crisis confirmed the truth of Phillips’s insight concerning public opinion. A passionate community activist and parent H. Lynn Adelsman, researched and laid out the problem with such exceptional clarity that neighborhoods beyond the borders of Phillips suddenly realized that our cause was also theirs. Meantime, our deeply engaged State Representative, Karen Clark, pushed for the intervention of higher levels of government with the result that in 2007 a broad area surrounding “Arsenic Triangle” was declared a federal Superfund project. Two years later, the Environmental Protection Agency had appropriated up to $25 million to remediate and restore not only the site, but also approximately 500 arsenic-affected residential properties. Lawns were excavated to a depth of 12 inches, gardens to a level of 18 inches. The “Triangle” itself was completely decontaminated. 

The work on the arsenic issue followed a 10-year collaboration to reduce childhood lead poisoning in Phillips. Partners included five University of Minnesota medical and science departments, the Minneapolis and Minnesota Health Departments, the office of our State Representative Karen Clark, the Sustainable Resources Center, and the Honeywell Foundation The results of these combined efforts led to two federally-funded multi-million dollar, community governed research grants based on the expectation of designing improved intervention programs. The research was co-conducted with community members employed at living wages as peer educators, data entry specialists and translators. Though we did not know it at the time, we had designed a Community-Based Participatory Research Model of shared power, and decision making that worked to the benefit of all involved. All information and analysis developed through this research needed first to be shared with the community before being published in specialized academic journals. As a consequence, in 2000, community residents and academic researchers co-produced a12-page insert in The Alley Newspaper that summarized for everyone what our research had revealed about the threats of lead poisoning and how best to combat them. Exactly as Wendell Phillip had recommended we were choosing to “Call Things BY Their Right Names.”

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The Wisdom of Powerlessness

Peace House Community–A Place to Belong

By MARTI MALTBY 

I’ve had a horrible time coming up with an idea for this month’s column. I suppose that if that’s the worst thing to happen to me, I must be having a good week, but it’s still frustrating. 

As I’ve watched the Coronavirus pandemic unfold, I’ve been struck by how hard it is for us to grasp the scope of what we are facing. This is, after all, a global pandemic on a scale we haven’t seen in over a century. And yet, all over the world, everything from sports leagues to local schools are trying to keep to their normal schedules. Even at Peace House Community, I get asked every week when we will fully reopen. I answer that we don’t know yet but are working on a plan, while inside I am thinking, “Are you insane?! Everyone on staff and all my volunteers are over 50 and most are in high risk categories. Can’t you accept that Coronavirus is going to disrupt things for a long time?” 

Part of the problem, I think, is that we’ve become so used to controlling our surroundings through technology and innovation that we forget what we are dealing with. Mother Nature (or whatever term you want to use) is powerful, and sometimes we have to accept that we are not in control. 

Paul, a geography major who I knew in university, summed things up well when he interrupted a conversation to say, completely out of the blue, “You know, I’ve decided we just shouldn’t build houses on flood plains, in tornado alleys, along earthquake zones or next to mountains that are likely to collapse in an avalanche. So many cities were just bad ideas.” A mountain climber who made it to the top of Mount Everest expressed it slightly differently: “Anyone who makes it to the summit knows they haven’t really conquered the mountain. The mountain let them win.” 

As we deal with the pandemic, the stress and boredom they have brought on, the damage to the economy that will last indefinitely, we might find a little relief if we stop thinking we can control everything and quickly return to the way things were. Our world has changed, and pretending that we can keep things as they were assumes we have more power than we do. 

The first step of Alcoholics Anonymous’ twelve-step program makes sense in this context: “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol and that our lives had become unmanageable.” Obviously AA has eleven follow-up steps, but the starting point is admitting that we aren’t in control, and that simply trying to overpower the problem we face won’t work. Unfortunately, the rest of AA’s program doesn’t provide a roadmap for dealing with a pandemic, but it gives us a starting point. 

Of course, I have no more answers for our current situation than anyone else, and I don’t want to imply that we should just throw up our hands and give up. There are actions we can take to get through this as safely and quickly as possible. But even if we take those actions, we have to recognize that we’re not in charge at the moment, and that the best we can do is all we can do, as we get through this together. 

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A Tale of Two People

By PATRICK CABELLO HANSEL

RETURNING CHAPTER 3

So we’ve met Angel & Luz again. Angel works double shifts at Abbott to feed the family. Luz is trying to finish her degree at Augsburg. They raise their two children, wrestle with a complicated world, and still carrythe scars and questions of their past. They are happily married, and their marriage has trouble. Tolstoy famously said, “All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” Luz and Angel’s deep unhappiness is about to take them in two different directions. Will they find the joy hidden in their own darkness? 

Angel shook off the dream, made himself some coffee and finally looked at the clock. It was 2:50 pm. He had barely 10 minutes to run to Andersen to pick up Angelito. It was snowy and slushy out, but he couldn’t find his boots. So he put on his old tennis shoes, and ran. By the time he had run the five blocks there and walked the five blocks back, carrying his son half of the way, his feet were wet, then frozen and starting to turn numb. He tore off his shoes and socks as soon as they got home, and looked for a clean pair. There were none in his dresser, so he fished through the laundry bag looking for a pair that didn’t smell too bad. Whose week is it to do laundry? he wondered. His head was still foggy, even after he’d had another cup of coffee. 

He made Angelito’s favorite snack, peanut butter and grape jelly on a flour tortilla. He read his son the book he had brought home from school. He let him watch TV for a half hour, then carried him upstairs. They lay down on Angel and Luz’ bed. The boy asked the father to tell him a story about the family, and Angel began to tell him about his great-great-abuelo Luis, who had fought with Pancho Villa in the Revolution. They barely got to the part where they stole horses from the Federales when both of them, father and son, fell sound asleep. Angel didn’t set the alarm on his phone. It was only 4:30, and Luz would be back in time for supper. He had just one shift tonight—the graveyard one, but right now all he wanted to do was sleep. 

Meanwhile, Luz had stepped into the Quatrefoil bookstore, at the invitation of a kind, older man. As she saw him up close, she noticed that he had long white sideburns, like the kind you would see on an Englishman from Dickens’ time. He showed her a table with hot cider and cookies. She didn’t realize how hungry she was—she had skipped lunch—and ate four cookies quickly, apologizing to the kind man. 

“Oh, don’t worry about that,” he said. “We are here to feed the body as well as the soul.” 

He said his name was Harald, “with two a’s”. He showed Luz all around the store, pointing out fiction and poetry and art books, and commenting on several authors. 

“Wow,” Luz said, “you really know your stuff! How long have your worked here?” 

“Oh, I don’t work here,” Harald laughed. “I just come here when there’s a party.” 

Luz must have looked strangely at him, because he gently took her arm, and led her towards a little nook in the far side of the store. 

“Please don’t be alarmed,” he said. “But I’ve been waiting for you. I was hoping you’d come, but you never know about these things.” 

Harald pushed on a large, ancient book, which opened a small door. He stooped down and entered, then turned and stretched his hand out to Luz. 

“Come, my sweet light,” he said. “I have something to show you,” 

And though Luz had just met this strange man, and was troubled why he called her “my sweet light”, and though she knew Angel and the children were waiting, something about how the man spoke made her feel safe. She reached out her hand and stepped into the darkness. 

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A Book of Sorrows

Tales from Pioneers and Soldiers Memorial Cemetery 

By SUE HUNTER WEIR 

180th in a Series

A Book of Sorrows 

The title seems fitting for a book of poetry or maybe a novel, but its purpose was as far from those uses as possible. It was a ledger measuring 18” by 12” with a black cloth binding, trimmed with red Moroccan leather. It was the property of the County Morgue and contained the names of the people whose bodies were stored in “Death’s Lodging House” as one reporter put it, for some brief period of time. 

The first entry in this particular book, (although there were undoubtedly records of earlier deaths kept elsewhere,) was made on August 5, 1893, the same day that the new morgue opened for business. John F. Walsh, the city’s morgue keeper, most likely purchased a new ledger in honor of the occasion. Over the next 22 years almost 4,000 names- only one line allotted for each person- were recorded in the book. 

Six of the 26 names entered on the first page in the ledger are men who are buried in Pioneers and Soldiers Cemetery between early August and early November 1893. An article published in the Star Tribune on April 25, 1915, described the ledger as “devoting its pages to suicide, murder, accident and misfortune.” In other words, theirs were not easy or straightforward deaths. 

Philander Prescott Pettijohn’s name was the sixth entry in the ledger. He was killed when he was struck by a train. There was some question about whether his death was an accident or suicide, but the official cause of death was finally recorded as “railroad accident.” Pettijohn was the grandson of one of Minnesota’s most prominent families during its territorial days. His grandfather, Philander Prescott, arrived at Fort Snelling in 1819 and worked as a trapper, trader and government agent. His grandmother, Naginowenah (Mary Prescott), was the niece of Mahpiya Wicasta (Cloud Man), the tribal elder at the Bde-Maka-Ska encampment. His mother, Lucy Prescott, was Prescott’s oldest daughter, and his father, Eli Pettijohn, was a well-known miller and missionary. Philander Pettijohn was buried next to his grandparents and other family members. 

On October 1, 1893, a young man named Nicholas Ward (Seneca James West in the cemetery’s records) was killed while operating the freight elevator at the West Hotel. He accidentally fell into the shaft and fell six stories to his death. He was 19 years old. 

Magnus Anderson was taken to the morgue because the coroner said that he had reason to suspect suicide although why he thought so wasn’t made clear. The official cause of death eventually was determined to be uremia. Mr. Anderson was 28 years old. 

Charles Peterson was a carpenter but had been out of work for two weeks before he shot himself. The other men in his lodging house noticed that he had been uncharacteristically quiet for a few days before he died but other than that didn’t think anything unusual about his behavior. Peterson had been in the country for about two years, long enough to have become a member of the Flour City Lodge, No. 118. He left the receipt for his paid-up membership dues in plain view so that members of the lodge could be notified about his death and make arrangements for his funeral and burial. They did. 

Vincent Tyler was a Civil War veteran whose marriage to a much younger woman was falling apart. He wanted to move to Iowa to farm; she wanted to stay in Minneapolis where she had a job sewing costumes for opera companies and theatrical performances. When he couldn’t persuade her to leave, he shot her. Fortunately, her wound was not fatal. He then shot and killed himself. His body remained at the morgue until the Grand Army of the Republic received proof that Tyler was a veteran and arranged his burial in the Grand Army plot. 

John Nelson died from typhoid fever in St. Mary’s Hospital on November 1, 1893. Most likely the coroner was simply trying to locate his family. 

If the stories of those named in the Book of Sorrows were grim, there was occasionally cause for celebration on the morgue’s second floor where John Walsh and his family lived. In September 1893, only a month after the new building opened, Mary Ann Walsh, John’s wife, gave birth to their first daughter, Mary Irene. In December 1896, she gave birth to another, their second daughter, Frances. John Walsh served as county morgue keeper for eight years. He died in 1932 at the age of 73, and was buried in St. Mary’s Cemetery. 

The Hennepin County Morgue located at 815 South Fourth Street wasbuilt in 1893. 
Business offices and storage on the ground floor level. Family apartment located upstairs. 

Photo credit: Hennepin County Library 

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Rounding the Corner

METRO TRANSIT 

By JOHN CHARLES WILSON 

From the perspective of the common customer, the situation with Metro Transit and the coronavirus probably looks like the end of the world. However, from the point of view of someone who follows the inner workings of the system, it is merely asleep, not dead. 

There is a service change going into effect 12 September 2020. Unfortunately, the details haven’t been made public as of the deadline for this month’s Alley issue. That said, I speculate that we will be moving closer to a restoration of the full pre-COVID-19 schedule. For those of us who are tired of long waits, or of having to go a different way because their usual route is suspended, this will be great news. 

Behind the scenes, plans are still being made for the future. At present, there is one piece of major good news and one piece of bad news. The bad news first: 

The Blue Line extension to North Minneapolis and the northwestern suburbs has been put on yet another delay because the BNSF Railroad won’t grant permission for Blue Line tracks to be put on their right of way. Personally, I don’t find this to be much of a problem as the BNSF route is less than ideal. I hope they keep the portions of the route on Olson Memorial Highway in Minneapolis and Bottineau 

Boulevard/Broadway in Brooklyn Park. The plans have already been made, might as well use them. 

However, without being able to use the BNSF property, Penn Avenue to Broadway to Bottineau would be the most geographically useful alternative. Stops for Plymouth Avenue and Golden Valley Road on Penn would be more useful than they would be in the middle of Theodore Wirth Park. Extra stops on Broadway/Bottineau at Hy-Vee, 42 nd, and 62 nd would further add to the usefulness of this line. 

Transit2 

Now for the good news: The long-hoped-for Northstar service extension to Saint Cloud is back on the table. MNDOT recently published a feasibility study and it looks like it could really happen in about fiveyears. Even though the best of the four proposed scenarios isn’t great, it’s better than what we have now. 

Hopefully, the coronavirus will be but a bad memory by the time either of these plans graduates from the drawing board to the stark light of reality. I hope to live to see it. 

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Hennepin County Libraries are reopening with limited in-person services

By LINDSEY FENNER 

Franklin Library Computer Hours 

Tuesday & Wednesday 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. 

Thursday 12-7:30 p.m. 

Friday & Saturday 9 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. 

Sunday & Monday – closed 

Franklin Library meal pick-up for youth, Thursdays, Noon-2 p.m. For ages 18 and under. Pick up a week worth of free meals. Caregivers can pick up meals for youth who are not present. Meals include: sandwiches, milk, fruit, vegetable, and snack. 

Connect with the library social worker outside Franklin Library, Wednesdays 

9am- 5pm: 

• Basic needs (clothing, food, meals, shelter) 

• Chemical Health 

• Disability Services 

• Education & Employment 

• Hennepin County Benefits 

• Housing 

• A listening ear 

• Mental Health Resources 

• Transportation 

ResourcesFor Updated information on Hennepin County Library services during the Coronavirus Pandemic, visit www.hclib.org. All information is accurate as of August 15, 2020 

LIBRARY UPDATES: 

Franklin Library at 1413 E Franklin Avenue is open for computer use! Call 612-543- 6925 to make an appointment. The building will remain locked, but staff will let you in at your appointment time. Masks are required and will be provided if you do not bring one. Because of social distancing, staff will be unable to offer computer assistance. You will have access to a desktop computer, Internet, and printing. You will need to bring your own headphones. At this time, Franklin Library is open for computer use ONLY. Other areas and services, including book/DVD check-out, are not available. They will be accepting returns during staffed service hours. 

Grab and Go Library Service at Hosmer Library: Starting at the end of August, Hosmer Library, 347 E 36th St., will be open for retrieving holds, limited browsing of materials, checking out items, returning library materials, quick reference support, computer appointments and printing. Meeting rooms, study rooms, children’s play areas, and lounges will not be available for use at this time. Masks are required and will be provided if you do not bring one. Check the library website for up-to-date service information and hours. 

Physical Materials: Due dates for physical materials continue to be automatically extended. You are not required to return materials at this time. Libraries are accepting returns during staffed service hours only. Items will be removed from your account after a three-day quarantine. 

Online Library Events: There are a growing number of online library events! Check out the schedule by going online to www.hclib.org and click on “Events”. 

Ask Us: Have a reference or library account question? Call, text, chat with, or email a library worker. 

https://www.hclib.org/ contact 

Call 612-543-KNOW (5669) to reach library staff by phone. 

MONDAY-THURSDAY 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. 

FRIDAY-SATURDAY 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. 

SUNDAY NOON – 5 p.m. 

ESPAÑOL/SPANISH: Llame o envíe un texto al 651-503-8013 para recibir ayuda en español. 

HMOOB/HMONG: Hu losis text rau lub tsev nyeem ntawv ntawm 612-385-0886 txais kev pab hais lus Hmoob. 

SOOMAALI/SOMALI: Caawimaad Soomaali ah, soo wac ama qoraal (text) usoo dir maktabada 612-235-1339. 

E-BOOKS AND AUDIOBOOKS: 

LIBBY: The Libby app is available for iOS and Android devices and is a streamlined way to access downloadable ebooks and audiobooks from OverDrive. You can check out audiobooks right in the app. You can also read eBooks in the app or send them to your Kindle. 

CLOUD LIBRARY: Find downloadable eBooks for readers of all ages. A reader app is also available for Apple, Android and other devices. 

Lindsey is an East Phillips resident and usually works at Hosmer Library in South Minneapolis, but is currently working a reassignment at Hennepin County Public Health as a Covid-19 Case Investigator 

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