History of Hip, History Forum, History Lounge and A Toast to Prohibition at History Center in January

For immediate release

Release dated: 
December 4, 2013
Media contacts: 

Megan Lawson • Marketing and Communications • 651-259-3141 • megan.lawson@mnhs.org

Jessica Kohen • Marketing and Communications • 651-259-3148 • jessica.kohen@mnhs.org

Wendy Jones • Minnesota History Center • 651-259-3411 • wendy.jones@mnhs.org

Quick facts: 

Place: Minnesota History Center
Address: 345 Kellogg Blvd W., St. Paul MN 55102-1903
Cost: varies by program
Phone: 651-259-3000, 800-657-3773
Website: http://www.minnesotahistorycenter.org

History of Hip, History Forum, History Lounge and A Toast to Prohibition at History Center in January


The popular History of Hip program returns in January with Minnesota distillers and the Stearns County Historical Society, who will share details of Minnesota's notable moonshining past and discuss the future of distilleries. In History Forum: For the Safety of All, Annette Atkins lectures on the effect "loyalty committees" during World War I had on Minnesota's reputation as a progressive state. A Toast to Prohibition provides a musical and humorous look at both sides of the Prohibition battle and author Paul Maccabee visits the History Lounge to share his extensive knowledge of gangster activity during the 1920s and 1930s in St. Paul.

Event: History of Hip: Booze
Date: Tuesday, Jan. 7
Time: 7:30 to 9 p.m.
Place: The Turf Club, 1601 University Ave., St. Paul
Cost: $10/$8 MNHS members
Reservations: recommended; call 651-259-3015 or register online

Spirits are up as an explosion of interest in cocktail culture and artisan spirits has resulted in record-level growth for the craft distillery industry. Although Panther Distillery of Osakis, Minnesota is currently the state's only licensed distillery, many more are on the horizon. St. Paul is set to welcome its first distillery since Prohibition when 11 West Spirits moves into the old Hamm's Brewery complex, which has been vacant since 1997. In the works for 11 West is a plan to re-create Minnesota 13 Moonshine Whiskey, a whiskey that enjoyed national popularity during Prohibition and turned the small Stearns County town of Holdingford into the unofficial moonshine capital of Minnesota, thanks to its high-quality corn.

Learn more about Minnesota’s illicit past at St. Paul's Turf Club with guests from Stearns County Historical Society and Lee Egbert of 11 Wells and Dashfire Bitters. The speakers will discuss craft cocktails and mixing up new versions of old classics with artisan bitters. Participants can also taste and discuss new spirits with Adrian Panther of Panther Distillery.

This program is held in the Clown Lounge at the Turf Club which is only accessible by stairs. Please call 651-259-3015 for alternate accommodations. This event is for ages 21 and older.

Event: History Forum: For the Safety of All
Date: Saturday, Jan. 18
Time: 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Place: Minnesota History Center
Cost: $15/$11 MNHS members

At the start of World War I, the United States relied heavily upon Minnesota to provide wheat to feed the troops and iron ore to supply them with military equipment and weapons. The fact that Minnesota had one of the nation's largest foreign-born populations did not sit well with politicians and business leaders who would develop the Commission of Public Safety (CPS) in an effort to prevent immigrants and political agitators from interfering with the state's duty to the nation. Productive neighbors were suddenly worthy of mistrust and suspicion. Ordinary citizens tarred and feathered neighbors, hung effigies of prominent figures on light posts, hounded union members and reported on each other to "loyalty committees." What impact did the CPS have on a state renowned as progressive?

Join Annette Atkins, professor of history at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University, for a lecture on Minnesota's role in shaping the Progressive era.

Annette Atkins is a frequent historical advisor to the Minnesota Historical Society.

This program is made possible with support from the Arts, Culture and Heritage Fund, voted into law by the people of Minnesota in 2008. For more information visit www.minnesotahistorycenter.org/forum.

Event: A Toast to Prohibition: Songs of Temperance and Temptation
Date: Jan. 21, 22, 23, 25 and 26
Time: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m.
Place: Minnesota History Center
Cost: $27 adults, $22 MNHS members
Reservations: recommended; register online

toast to prohibition
Music and laughs accompany this stage production of the historical battle between the players of the temperance and anti-Prohibition players. Semi-staged and fully costumed, this performance features the songs of Carrie Nation and 19th-century Temperance Union meetings, balanced by a full cup of "good ol' anti-Prohibition tunes."

Narration from F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby" and projections of historical images compliment the show as performers prance to Victorian waltzes, croon 1920s jazz, launch into Irish reels, ragtime and gospel, and belt out some of Irving Berlin's best showstoppers.
This Rose Ensemble concert series and CD-release is produced in association with the Minnesota History Center and is made possible by the Legacy Amendment's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on Nov. 4, 2008.

American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition was created by the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia and made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor. For more information visit www.minnesotahistorycenter.org/roseensemble.

Event: History Lounge: The Original Gangsters
Date: Tuesday, Jan. 28
Time: 7 p.m.
Place: Minnesota History Center
Cost: Free

dillinger wantedThe 1920s and 1930s saw gangsters riding a crime wave across the country, wreaking havoc in the midwest and using St. Paul as a training ground and refuge. Men like John Dillinger, Babyface Nelson, Machine Gun Kelly and Alvin "Creepy" Karpis made themselves comfortable in St. Paul, contributing to the city's reputation as a safe haven for bootleggers, kidnappers, murderers and thieves.

Join Paul Maccabee, nationally-recognized expert and author of "John Dillinger Slept Here," for an armchair tour of the Twin Cities' most notorious Prohibition speakeasies, gambling dens and gangland hideouts of the '20s and '30s. Listen to the stories of gangland romances and feuds, bank robberies and assassinations. And visit the new exhibit American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition created by the National Constitution Center, before the program. Admission to the History Center is free on Tuesdays from 5 to 8 p.m.

About the Minnesota History Center

The Minnesota History Center is located at 345 Kellogg Blvd. W. in St. Paul. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays (admission is free on Tuesdays from 5 to 8 p.m.), 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays, and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. Auxiliary aids and services are available with advance notice. For more information, call 651-259-3000 or 1-800-657-3773.

The Society’s calendar of events is posted online at www.mnhs.org/calendar. The website also has information about all of the Society’s programs, museums and historic sites.

About the Minnesota Historical Society

The Minnesota Historical Society is a non-profit educational and cultural institution established in 1849. The Society collects, preserves and tells the story of Minnesota’s past through museum exhibits, libraries and collections, historic sites, educational programs and book publishing. Using the power of history to transform lives, the Society preserves our past, shares our state’s stories and connects people with history.

The Minnesota Historical Society is supported in part by its Premier Partners: Xcel Energy and Explore Minnesota Tourism.