Minneapolis Tidende

Minneapolis tidende (Minneapolis, Minn.) 1895-1935 Browse the title

Minneapolis Tidende ("Minneapolis Times") began publication in January 1895, after absorbing two local Norwegian-language weekly papers - Budstikken ("The Messenger") and Fædrelandet og Emigranten ("Fatherland and Emigrant") to become a weekly edition of Minneapolis Daglig Tidende ("Minneapolis Daily Times"). An eight-page, six-column Democratic newspaper published in Norwegian, Minneapolis Tidende served what was at the time a large and growing population of Norwegian Americans with a mix of local, regional, and national news, as well feature news items from Norway, Denmark, and Sweden. Among its regular columns were Kirkelig Rundskue ("Church Vistas"), For Kvinden ("For the Woman"), Hjemmet og Farmen ("The Home and the Farm"), and Spørgsmaal og Svar ("Questions and Answers") which consisted of questions submitted from subscribers to the paper's editors. With an average circulation in 1914 of 32,000, the readership of Minneapolis Tidende extended far beyond the Twin Cities, into greater Minnesota and the neighboring states, making it one of the most widely read Norwegian-language newspapers in the United States.

The history of Minneapolis Tidende interleaves with several related titles. In 1887, 33-year-old Thorvald Guldbrandsen, then the owner and publisher of Grand Forks Tidende ("Grand Forks Times"), moved from North Dakota to Minneapolis in order to follow through on his "bold idea" that "Minneapolis ought to have its own daily Norwegian newspaper like Chicago." Guldbrandsen began publishing Minneapolis Daglig Tidende ("Daily Times") in January 1887. He added a weekly edition in 1888 when he purchased Budstikken and continued its publication. When Fædrelandet og Emigranten ceased in December 1893, it was absorbed by Budstikken. However, the latter ceased publication a year later. With its debut on January 4, 1895, the weekly Minneapolis Tidende emerged as the primary paper for the Norwegian communities of Minneapolis and St. Paul and greater Minnesota and the adjoining states. Later, in 1907, Minneapolis Tidende would also absorb the Danish-language newspaper from St. Paul, Nordvesten ("Northwest").

Minneapolis Tidende's first editor-in-chief was Sigvart Sørensen, who served until 1923, when he was succeeded by Carl G.O. Hansen, who had previously served as the paper's associate editor and music columnist. Hansen's tenure as editor-in-chief saw Minneapolis Tidende increase its focus on arts and culture and the unique experiences of Norwegian immigrants living in the United States. In a series of articles entitled "Glimpses from Life in Norwegian America," Hansen sought to educate his readers about the history of Norwegians in the New World.

Although Minneapolis Tidende identified itself as a Democratic newspaper, it did not regularly advocate partisan political opinions. Instead, during political campaigns, it vigorously championed what it saw as deserving candidates of Norwegian heritage – who, for the most part, also shared the paper's political opinions. One notable exception to this trend occurred in 1895 when Knut Nelson, a Republican, was elected to the United States Senate from Minnesota in a highly contentious election. In a strongly worded editorial, written by Sigvart Sørensen, Minneapolis Tidende defended Nelson, as well as all Scandinavians, saying "Here in Minnesota, no one has done more for the development of the state than Scandinavians, and a Scandinavian-born citizen is just as entitled to become Senator as anyone else."

Declining circulation, economic hardships brought on by the Great Depression, and the death in 1934 of owner and publisher Thorvald Guldbrandsen forced Minneapolis Tidende to cease publication the following year. In its final issue, published on March 21, 1935, Carl G.O. Hansen wrote "With this issue Minneapolis Tidende bids its subscribers farewell." Minneapolis Tidende was subsequently absorbed by one of its regional competitors, Iowa's Decorah-Posten og Ved Arnen ("Decorah Post and By the Fireside").