This Day in Duluth Archive

Use our search function to find “This Day” entries for a specific day of the year. Spell out the month and include a comma after the date numeral, do not include a year, and place it all within quotation marks, like this: “May 1,”.

October 7, 1871: Birth of Future Duluthian Adelaide Thurston

On this day in 1871, future Duluthian Adelaide Belle Sawyer was born in Wisconsin. Her family moved to Duluth in 1889, when she was 18. She quickly became involved in local theater, and by 1894 local newspapers were calling her “one of the most promising and brightest of the amateur performers of Duluth.” She was…

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October 6, 1933: Officer Butchart Killed by Motorist

On this day in Duluth in 1933, 70-year-old Duluth police sergeant David Butchart was struck and killed by a car at 11:30 p.m. Butchart and other officers were stopping cars trying to find an automobile that was stolen while an eight-year-old boy was asleep inside—police were treating it as a kidnapping. The driver was found…

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October 5, 1892: Daily News Purchases Daily Tribune

On this day in Duluth in 1892, St. Paul “Empire Builder” James J. Hill sold his Duluth morning newspaper, the Duluth Daily Tribune to Guilford Hartley and Luther Mendenhall, who already owned the Duluth Daily News. In about 1890 Hill offered Robert C. Mitchell, who founded the newspaper in 1870 as the Duluth Tribune, $47,000…

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October 4, 1931: First “Trolley Busses” in Duluth

On this day in Duluth in 1931, the Duluth Superior Transit Company put new vehicles into service: “trackless trolley busses” powered by overhanging wires once used for traditional streetcars. The new busses rode on truck tires, not rails, and could maneuver within 14 feet of the overhead wires. The initial route of the busses, which…

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October 3, 1935: Aviatrix Amelia Earhart visits Duluth

On this day in Duluth in 1935, Ameila Earhart visited the Zenith City, staying at the Holland House Hotel and entertaining a large crowd at the Duluth Armory that evening. Donning a brown flying jacket and “slacks,” Miss Earhart was described by the Duluth Herald as “even more cordial than she has been pictured.” While…

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October 2, 1921: Jalmer Heikkinen’s Murderous “Orgy of Shooting”

On this day in Duluth in 1921, Jalmer “John” Heikkinen (also spelled “Hikkinen”), shot and killed Waino Pauttu at the People’s Hotel, a Finnish boarding house and the former Bethel building at Lake Avenue and Sutphin Street in Duluth’s Uptown, today’s Canal Park Business District. The two had been arguing over the affection of 16-year-old…

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October 1, 1900: William Jennings Bryan campaigns in Duluth

On this day in Duluth in 1900, Democratic presidential nominee William Jennings Bryan addressed a crowd of 5,000 at the Third Regiment Armory. While the Duluth Herald described the crowd as “the largest the Armory has ever held,” the Duluth News Tribune pointed out that Bryan had attracted a larger crowd at the Duluth Street…

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September 28, 1873: Thomas Harvey absconds with construction payroll 

On this day in Duluth in 1873, the Duluth Minnesotian reported that Thomas Harvey of the Comstock & Harvey Brownstone Company had skipped town with $8,000 meant to pay laborers building the Banning Block and the Hunter Block in downtown Duluth. Comstock & Harvey had leased Michael Chambers’ brownstone quarry in Fond du Lac to…

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