10 Things You Didn’t Know Minnesota Was Known For

Downtown Minneapolis during freezing weather

Every state in the country is known for something, but unfortunately, every state doesn’t get the attention it deserves – and Minnesota is one of them. In fact, if you’re not from Minnesota, there’s a pretty good chance you don’t even think much about it. However, while it may not be one of the most popular states, it’s definitely an interesting one. Minnesota is known for some things that you couldn’t even imagine, and some people born and raised in the area may not know just what a rich history their home state has. However, once you learn what Minnesota is all about, it’s going to be hard to deny that it’s a pretty cool place. Here are 10 things you didn’t know Minnesota was known for.

Minnesota is home of the first intercollegiate basketball game

The Obama Family Watches U. Maryland v. Oregon State Basketball Game

Basketball is easily one of the most popular collegiate sports in the country. Each year, millions of college basketball fans flock to stadiums and/or tune into games on TV. However, what many people don’t know is that Minnesota has a very important role in the history of college basketball. On February 3, 1895 the first intercollegiate basketball game took place in Minnesota between The University of Minnesota and Hamline.

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

The stapler was invented in Minnesota 

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A stapler probably isn’t something you think about often, but could you imagine life without it? If you work in an office, the chances are no. Thanks to staplers, putting together bunches of papers is a breeze, and staples are very user-friendly devices that don’t take any particular skill. Well, next time you to go staple something, thank some time to thank the state of Minnesota. During the 1920s, inventor Charles Henderson came up with the stapler in Spring Valley, MN.

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St. Paul was initially called Pig’s Eye

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St. Paul is one of the most popular cities in Minnesota, and it’s known for a lot of cool things. However, one thing many people don’t know about the city is that it was originally called Pig’s Eye. Named for Pierra Parrant, the first European to live within the boarders of what now comprises St. Paul, the city was known as Pig’s Eye until the 1840s. People who live in St. Paul are probably happy that they don’t have to walk around telling everyone they live in a place named Pig’s Eye.

 (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

Prince was born in Minnesota

Prince performing at the Grammys

Prince is undeniably one of the most popular artists of his generation. Over the course of his career, he’s become a pop culture icon, and his music has influence and entertained several generations of listeners. But with his smooth persona and eclectic style, many people would probably assume that prince was from a place like New York or Los Angeles. However, he was actually born in Minneapolis in 1958. Sure, Minnesota isn’t known for being a music hot spot, but being the birth place of prince isn’t too shabby.

 (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Minnesota has nearly 100,000 miles of shoreline

view of the coastline

Most people would probably guess that having miles of shoreline would be the last thing that Minnesota is known for. However, the fact is that the state boasts 90,000 miles of coastline which is more than Hawaii, California, and Florida put together. So if you love hanging out by the water, Minnesota certainly has a lot of space to do it.

 (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)

The first Target store was opened in Minnesota

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Can you imagine a world without Target? Maybe, but why would you want to? Fully equipped with everything you could possibly need, Target has become one of the most popular stores in the country, and most people love the quality and convenience it has to offer. Well, no matter how much you love Target, you probably didn’t know that the first store was opened in Roseville, MN in 1962.

(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Minnesota was once on the cutting edge of medicine

 A doctor wears a stethoscope as he see a patient

Over the years, modern medicine has made some incredible –and life saving– progress. Who would have guessed that Minnesota would have been right in the thick of it? Although most people would never guess that Minnesota is known for being at the forefront of medical advancement, both the first open heart surgery and the first bone marrow transplant done in the United States took place at the University of Minnesota.

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Little House on the Prairie was set in Minnesota

Open field of grass

Okay, so you probably knew that having lots of open space is one of the things that Minnesota is known for.  But what you probably didn’t know is that Little House on the Praire’s author and protagonist, Laura Ingalls, lived in Walnut Grove, Minnesota. That’s right, Walnut Grove is a real place – although is currently has a population of less than 900 people.

(Photo by Sandra Mu/Getty Images)

Tonka trucks get their name from a famous lake in Minnesota

Toy truck collection

Whether you’re a male or a female, there’s a pretty good chance that you’ve heard of Tonka trucks. Well guess what, these popular die-cast toys are one of the things that Minnesota is known for. Not only were the trucks created in the state, but they’re also named after Minnesota’s Lank Minnetonka.

(Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)

Minnesota has a state muffin

Chef Alfredo Mora puts a blueberry muffin in a paper take out container

It’s common for states to have things that symbolize the area. But when have you ever heard of a place having a state muffin? Well, there’s a first time for everything. During the later 80s, Minnesota adopted the blueberry muffin as the statewide muffin at the request of a local elementary school student.

 (Photo by David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

Lead (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)


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