The Top Ten Historic Homes of Minnesota

With Minnesota having such a rich history, it’s no doubt that it has a rich store of historic, grand homes, as well. These top ten historic homes of Minnesota are fine examples.

1. D. Hubbard House

Located in Mankato and built in 1871, this grand home was the residence of R. D. Hubbard, owner of the Hubbard Milling Company. This 16 room home was the first private residence in Mankato to have indoor plumbing, electricity, and a telephone.

2. James J. Hill House

The famous railroad tycoon had this 36,500 square foot mansion completed in 1891 in St. Paul. With 13 bathrooms, 22 fireplaces, and a three-story pipe organ, this home cost almost $1 million dollars.

3. Van Dusan Mansion

This 12,000 square foot mansion was built by George W. Dusan, Minneapolis’s grain mogul in 1892. As for the exterior, it was finished using Sioux quartzite. In 1994, the mansion was in danger of being demolished. However, an investor came in at the last moment to save the home. After an extensive renovation, the home was turned into a venue for weddings and events. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

4. Scott Fitzgerald House (Summit Terrace)

No list of historic Minnesota homes would be complete without listing a home of one of Minnesota’s famous literary sons. The 1889 Victorian row house was home to Fitzgerald’s parents and was where he completed his first novel, This Side of Paradise.

5. Turnbald Mansion

Completed in 1908, this mansion took four years to build. As for rooms, the mansions contains 40. Interestingly, one of the unique points of this mansion are the 11 decorative tile stoves imported from Sweden.

6. Alexander Ramsey House

Completed in 1872, this home belonged to the first territorial governor of Minnesota. At the time of its completion, Ramsey was then serving in the U.S. Senate.

7. Hooper-Bowler-Hillstrom House

Located in Belle Plaine, this 1871 was built by Sandford Hooper, a prosperous businessman. It was bought by Samuel Bowler in 1886, the founder of the State Bank of Belle Plaine. He added a two-story outhouse. In 1901, Alfred Hillstrom moved into the home. Generations of the Hilstrom family lived there until 1975, when it was purchased by the Belle Plaine Historical Society. The property also houses the Red Barn Museum featuring Belle Plaine artifacts.

8. Charles Lindbergh House

The childhood home of Minnesota’s famous aviator and inventor is now part of the Charles Lindbergh State Park. Viewing the home gives you a sense of how it shaped his character.

9. Sibley Historic Site

The site is the home of Henry Hastings Sibley, Minnesota’s first governor. It was built in 1836 and served as a bachelor pad and fur trade office (he was a manager for the American Fur Company) until Sibley married Sarah Jane Steele in 1843. However, in 1840, the home served as the temporary territorial headquarters for Governor Alexander Ramsey while visiting Mendota.

10. Heritage House

This little house built in 1870 in Woodbury takes you back in time. It was originally built as an attachment to a log cabin. The property was purchased in 1866 by Frederick Raths, who emigrated from Germany in 1853. The log cabin was torn down in 1895 by Henry Raths and the addition was moved to another part of the property. It wouldn’t be the last time the addition would be moved; it was moved two more times in the early 1990s.

These are just a few of the historic homes that give us a glimpse of what life was like hundreds of years ago. Each one has unique features and showcases the craftsmanship of Minnesota citizens. Touring one of these homes is a great way to explore the history of our great state.