Minnesota  State Archives

Recent State Archives Acquisitions: November 2020

Background Information

The most significant acquisition this month are records (dated 1893-1989) transferred by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner covering a nearly 100 year period. Besides the extent of the date span, the quantity is also extensive, so this is the largest collection of its kind in the State Archives; see below for details. Medical examiner and coroner records are very useful for family history research, but are also valuable for research in the areas of public health, social and local history. The Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office also handles cases for Dakota County and other counties, and included in the transfer are Dakota County coroner records dated circa 1913-1920; they join similar Dakota County coroner records preserved in the State Archives.

During the COVID 19 pandemic public health issues are obviously in the forefront, and it is important to document that important function. Morrison County transferred public health advisory committee records (dated 1994-2016), including meeting minutes, an advisory committee handbook, correspondence, and a hospice policy manual. The records pre-date the current pandemic, but the State Archives anticipates receiving records in the future that document Minnesota government's response to the 2020 pandemic. Continuing the public health theme, the City of Red Wing transferred maternity hospital registers (dated 1940-1958) that will join other maternity hospital registers, dating from 1918, representing cities throughout the state. The records may include information relating to adoptions and out of wedlock births, so are restricted for 100 years, but the registers are a valuable resource for family, social and local history.

A great resource for documenting the history and economic development of St. Paul are board meeting minutes and meeting files, dated 2008-2011, of the St. Paul Port Authority. The records continue an existing set dating from 1932. Also included in the acquisition are photographs (undated, 1970-1976) depicting the Red Rock Industrial District (1976), the Twin City Barge and Towing Company's Red Rock fleet areas (1970), and the diesel towboat "Floyd H. Blaske" which served on the Upper Mississippi River, Missouri River, and Illinois River in the 1930s-1950s.

Collecting records concerning under-documented communities is a priority of the State Archives, and records transferred by the Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Commission help fulfill that goal. The transfer includes meeting minutes (dated 1991-2017) of the Commission and its committees, subject files (dated 1987-2017) of former Executive Director Mary Hartnett, and published records and reports (dated 1989-2015). The records complement an existing set of records preserved in the State Archives, and will help document the Commission's advocacy and collaboration roles, and its efforts to develop solutions to barriers faced in education, employment, health care, technology and public access.



1. Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Commission. Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Commission. Records dated 1987-2017. 4 boxes.

2. Goodhue County. Red Wing (City). City hospital maternity registers dated 1940-1958. 1 box.

3. Hennepin County. Medical Examiner records (dated 1893-1989), including morgue record (1893-1920), coroner record books/medical examiner reports (1906-1989), coroner/medical examiner autopsy reports and chemical analysis reports (1909-1989), index cards (1964-1980), and medical examiner case files (1964-1980). Also, Dakota County coroner register and record of coroner's inquest (circa 1913-1920). 100 boxes, 102 rolls of master negative microfilm, 103 rolls of duplicate negative microfilm.

4. Morrison County. Public health advisory committee records dated 1994- 2016. 1 box.

5. Ramsey County. St. Paul Port Authority. Board meeting minutes and meeting files (dated 2008-2017), and photographs (undated, 1970-1976). 4 boxes.


Back to Recent Acquisitions.


December 9, 2020