Monday, June 14, 2010

House History Research: More Details about the Original Building Card and First Families

In a previous post, I featured this framed copy of the original building card to our house which is at the bottom of our stairwell near our front entry shown below.

Here is a close up of the building card (address blocked out).  I contacted a librarian at the Hennepin Library in the Special Collections department, gave him our address and he came back the same day with our house history information and information about the first families that lived in our house.

Our home was built for $5,500 in 1924 by Jake Freidson. Which is spelled incorrectly on the building card as 'Fredson'. How do I know that? Our librarian also sent us the US Census information about the families.  Below is a copy of the Fifteen US Census from 1930. It is incredibly hard to read unless you zoom in like crazy, but the 2nd family listed from the bottom is the Freidson Family. Jacob and Anna and their three children were the first residents in our home. We got some help from the librarian about their life, they were a Jewish family from Russia and owned a grocery store at 2201 4th Ave.
The second family that lived in our house was the Olesky family, here is the 1930 census information for them as well. Rymal and Sarah Olesky ran the Olesky Brothers Grocery with his brother Jacob Olesky at 801 9th Street South. They had three children and I can't really read it easily but also a live in Sister In Law or Mother in Law. This family was also Russian Jewish.

I also have a post about the history of the Homewood neighborhood that details more about the families that lived there. Since North Minneapolis was historically Jewish, so it was fun to find out how our house fit into the history of the neighborhood. 

I hope to dig up more fun facts and details about our house and the neighborhood as we continue our little DIY adventure!


  1. This is very interesting to me. I stumbled on your blog today through Hooked on Houses. We lived in North Minneapolis for about 17 years, and during the Plymouth race problems. In fact we went through National Guard check points to take kids home south of Plymouth. We lived east and north near Broadway and Fremont. Our last house was a lovely one with maple woodwork, hardwood floors with inset edging. We lost our beautiful elms to Dutch Elm disease in the '70s. I also lost many beautiful trees in south Mpls. as a child. Ouch! That hurts!

  2. Thanks for the tip about the special collections area at the library. I just contacted them to see what they can tell me about our older NoMi home.


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