• Prospect Park Minneapolis Slideshow

    Prospect Park – Minneapolis, Minnesota

Sidney Pratt SCHOOL Centennial, 1998

Neighbors were invited to join in festivities celebrating Pratt's 100th birthday. Events were scheduled every day from September 14-19, 1998.

Thursday night speakers:

  • Judith Kroening, founder of the consulting practice, A Charmed Life, dedicated to creating a pleasant and productive home and workplace environment through Feng Shui, the ancient Chinese art of placement. She studies with Feng Shui Master Professor Thomas Lun Yun. She will talk to us about the Feng Shui of Pratt.
  • David Lanegran, Professor of Geography at Macalester College and author of nine books on the Twin Cities and their neighborhoods plus dozens of shorter publications. He has had a long-standing involvement in geography education at all levels and in Twin Cities neighborhood conservation programs. He has received teacher-excellence awards and the WCCO Good Neighbor Award.
  • Charlene Roise, President of Hess Roise and Company, a full-service historical consulting firm. She holds an M.A. in Historic Preservation from Boston U. and has a background in commercial real estate. She serves on the Board of Advisers for the National trust for Historic Preservation and is a longtime volunteer for the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota.
  • Robert Roscoe, Head of Design for Preservation, a Minneapolis firm specializing in residential design and the restoration of older homes. He serves on the Minneapolis Historic Preservation Commission. He will show us slides of Prospect Park houses, identifying the variants and combinations of architectural styles.

Ever wonder what to do with all those old keys of unknown use and origin? Drop them in the yellow buckets at Pratt!

We need one million keys for the Pratt fountain, to be located in front of the Orlin Avenue entrance, and to be designed by our local (81 Arthur Ave.) professional fountain creator, Doug Freeman. Freeman will present "Public Art: Duluth to Tokyo" at Prospect Park United Methodist Church on Wed. October 7, 1998 at 7:30 PM. See his work, "Fountain of the Wind," in Duluth's Canal Park and in photographs on display at Pratt.

What was Prospect Park like in 1898?

During the planning process someone suggested describing the neighborhood as it existed in 1898, when the school was built. Trees were shorter then and no utility lines stretched above the residents' heads as they struggled along the unpaved streets and sidewalks.

Residents traveled to downtown Minneapolis and St. Anthony Falls on an interurban commuter train that ran just north of 4th St. SE through what used to be the Eustis farm. (The family home still stands at 3107 4th St. SE, the original location). A station at Malcolm Avenue was the Prospect Park stop.

By 1890 approximately 37 houses had been built in the Park, with another 42 added during the next 8 years. The figures are approximate since many home repairs (even whole buildings) appeared without the benefit of a city building permit. A street-by-street, house-by-house examination of the permit records reveals the addresses and ages of neighborhood homes and, from September 14-19, signs were placed in front of pre-1898 houses. A map showing these locations was available by Sept. 14 at Pratt, Luxton Park Tower Grocery, and Schneider Drug. There is a Mystery House photograph, taken in the early 20th century, on the reverse side of the map. The house is listed on the map, but it is for you, the reader/architectural sleuth, to figure out the address. The first person who called in with the correct address received a $50 gift certificate from Restoration Hardware on Grand Ave. in St. Paul.

- Bill Kahn