General John Henry Hammond first came to Superior from New York City in 1878. He returned two years later, bought four thousand acres of land in west Superior, and promptly transferred it to the Land and River Improvement Company, which he managed for Robert Belknap. The company went on to develop most of west Superior, building elevators, docks, and railways—essentially, Hammond and Belknap were the Jay Cookes of Superior. Superior’s Belknap Street and Hammond Avenue were named for the developers.
Hammond’s grandson, also named John Henry Hammond, worked in the music business and is credited for discovering such music legends as Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin, Bruce Springsteen, and Duluth native Robert Zimmerman, who moved to Hibbing as a child and later changed his name to Bob Dylan.