A Tale of Twin Cities

“The missionary comes after the whiskey — I mean he arrives after the whiskey has arrived; next comes the poor immigrant, with ax and hoe and rifle; next, the trader; next, the miscellaneous rush; next, the gambler, the desperado, the highwayman, and all their kindred in sin of both sexes; and next, the smart chap who has bought up an old grant that covers all the land; this brings the lawyer tribe; the vigilance committee brings the undertaker.

All these interests bring the newspaper; the newspaper starts up politics and a railroad; all hands turn to and build a church and a jail— and behold, civilization is established for ever in the land.

But whiskey, you see, was the van-leader in this beneficent work. It always is.”
— Mark Twain

The Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul are blessed with abundant natural beauty and rich terrain dotted with fantastic lakes of many sizes. The great Mississippi River runs through the heart of both cities, at once uniting and dividing the Twin Cities. Perhaps it might get colder than comfortable occasionally but it seems to have no effect on the cheerfulness and industriousness of the population.

Minneapolis feels like a modern Venice with all its floating skywalks connecting the multitude of towers that house one of the largest concentrations of Fortune 500 companies. St. Paul reminds one of Rome, with its State Capitol on a hill overlooking the Cathedral of Saint Paul. The Gilded Age seems to never have ended in the Twin Cities.

The river provided the lifeblood for the first settlements. St. Anthony Falls provided the energy to power the industries which sprang along the riverfront. The settlements, industries, and commercial activities have grown steadily since then to make the Twin Cities a truly fantastic place to live and work. The Manifest Destiny that led to the development and expansion of America is still alive in the Twin Cities.