02/17/13

Ideal Minneapolis

Hubert Humphrey as Vice President of the United States, 1965-69. (Library of Congress)

Hubert Humphrey as Vice President of the United States, 1965-69. (Library of Congress)

Individuals. Communities. Regions. Nations. The World.

One of the benefits of looking closely at local histories is to see how everyday lives connect with so many intersecting stories and layers of the past, the present, and the future.  I have been thinking about this after a Twitter exchange this week with Kirsten Delegard (@historyapolis), who directs the Historyapolis Project in Minneapolis. Her project aims to bring visibility and accessibility to the history of Minneapolis, which are goals similar to The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia project that I direct.

Connections between the local and global are an ongoing theme of Capital of the World. For Minneapolis, the connections are clear in a letter I found during my research at the United Nations Archives in New York.  As was often the case, I recognized a name that would later become much more prominent in national or international affairs. On December 26, 1945, the newly-elected mayor of Minneapolis, Hubert H. Humphrey, together with York Langton of the Minnesota United Nations Committee, sent this letter to Edward R. Stettinius, then the chief U.S. representative on the UN Preparatory Commission meeting in London:

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