UNDATED - May 11th, 1858 – Minnesota becomes a state

This great state that we live in came into existence on this date 153 years ago! First, Minnesota became a territory of the United States in 1849, then it was officially welcomed as the 32nd U.S. state on May 11, 1858.

Minnesota applied to be a state by submitting paperwork to President James Buchanan in January 1858. At the same time, the controversy over Kansas becoming a state took up attention, so Minnesota’s application was delayed for several months before it was finally approved by Congress.

White settlement in Minnesota began in 1820 with the establishment of Fort Snelling. Immigration was slow during the first half of the 19th century, with only 6,077 people living here in 1850. But then the building of railroads and canals brought a migration boom, and the population was over 150,000 by the time MN was granted statehood. It was over 1.7 million by the turn of the century! The population continued to grow by 15% each decade until it reached 3.4 million in 1960. As of 2010, Minnesota had 5,303,925 inhabitants.

Tell us what you think is the best part of living in our great state of Minnesota on our Facebook page.

Thanks to Sarah Warmka and the Stearns History Museum for their help with our series, "This Date In Central Minnesota History".