Historic Photos
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Historic Photos
Construction of the City Hall and Courthouse building was a feat to say the least. Huge blocks of granite -- some weighing as much as 26 tons each -- were transported by train from Ortonville, Minnesota. The downtown Minneapolis landscape also has changed significantly since the building's inception in the late 1800s. As time has passed and events have occurred, the building has endured as a lasting icon for Minneapolis and Hennepin County. Peruse the historic photo archive for a look into the founding and life of the City Hall and Courthouse as well as some close-ups of key building features.


Image Gallery: Historic Photo Archive
Clock Tower Elevator.  
A glance inside the clock tower elevator dated c. 1955 taken for a local newspaper. The elevator still exists today as seen in this photograph accommodating three to four people in very small and confined area for a ride that is equivalent to 13 stories.  Grotesque Guarding Elevators.  
41 different grotesques are carved into the columns found around ground floor elevators in the rotunda. About four inches in height, they were mistakenly attributed to Henry Chalker, but later found to be the work of Guwond. Similar faces are found on the exterior of the Masonic Temple at the corner of Hennepin Avenue and Sixth Street. Artist's Sketch of Laying of Cornerstone. 
This drawing commemorates the laying of the cornerstone in 1891, one of three celebrations open to the public during the nearly twenty years required to construct the City Hall and Courthouse. Original Cathedral Courtroom.  
The main courtroom, located on the third floor of the City Hall and Courthouse, matched the city council chambers in its grandness. Designed in the Arts and Craft style imported from Britain, it reflected the overall look of the building emphasizing the acanthus leaf motifs, coffered ceilings and large arches.
See all 24 images.