ST. PETER–History
— The City of St. Peter was founded in the year 1853 by Captain William Dodd. It is one of the oldest cities in Minnesota, and has the largest concentration of historic places in a downtown area in the state.
— St. Peter is the county seat of Nicollet County. Major Highways in St. Peter include: 169, 99, and 22.
— St. Peter is alongside the Minnesota River. It is also near Swan Lake.
— In 1858 the Minnesota Legislature designated St. Peter the state capital. The original bill was awaiting the governor’s signature when it was stolen by Joe Rolette of Pembina. Since Rolette had the bill outside of St. Peter for more than 48 hours, it lost that designation, and St. Paul was made the capital.
— The St. Peter Company was formed in the year 1856. A site south of Traverse Des Sioux was the company’s preferred location.
— While the City of St. Peter was founded in the year 1853, the city was not officially incorporated for 20 years, in 1873.
— St. Peter is home to the Traverse Des Sioux Historic Treaty Site. The treaty between the US Government and the Sioux Indians was signed in 1851, and opened up much of the Minnesota River Valley to settlement. The Treaty Site is located off Highway 169 on the north side of St. Peter.
— St. Peter is the hometown of 5 former Minnesota governors, more than any other town in the state. Willis Gorman, Henry Swift, Horace Austin, Andrew McGill, and John Johnson were all from St. Peter.
— Two famous opera singers are St. Peter natives: Olive Fremstad and Jussi Bjorling.
— Prior to bridges being built across the Minnesota River, St. Peter was the site of a few ferries across the river. One of them was operated by the founder of the town, William Dodd, for many years.

ST. PETER–People
— The City of St. Peter has a population of approximately 10,000 people. The Mayor is Chuck Zieman.
–The 14 sworn officers and 11 civilian employees of the Saint Peter Police Department are all highly competent, dedicated and committed women and men who strive to meet the service demands of over 11,400 citizens, a population that is growing. The Police Chief is Matthew Peters.
–The Saint Peter Volunteer Fire Department was established in 1869 to extinguish fires in the community. The Fire Department is still an all-volunteer agency but the mission has evolved. Not only does the Department extinguish fires, it is actively engaged in public education, fire prevention, and rescue operations. The Fire Station is located at 227 West Mulberry Street. The Fire Chief is Matt Ulman.
–District 508 covers 120 square miles in portions of two counties (Nicollet and Le Sueur), two municipalities (Saint Peter and Kasota), and seven townships (Lake Prairie, Oshawa, Traverse, New Sweden, Kasota, Washington, and Cleveland). Saint Peter Public Schools operates one Community & Family Education site, two elementary schools, one middle school, one high school, one alternative school, and one site that provides services to students with special needs.The St. Peter School District Superintendent is Paul Peterson.
–Lili Elofson and Momo Abdi were crowned St. Peter High School Homecoming queen and king during halftime of the football game in 2018.
–In Decmber, the St. Peter American Legion Post 37 was gifted the old Whiskey River property. Members voted to accept the gift from Nicollet County Bank.
–Also in December, Gustavus Adolphus College was featured in a PBS video project. The project showed the Christmas in Christ Chapel, with a behind-the-scenes look at the meaning and also the event performance itself. More than 300 students, faculty, and staff bring the program to life each year through the use of music, dance, spoken word, and the visual arts.
–Gustavus Adolphus College received a $1 million grant from Lilly Endowment Incorporated to support the continuing education and leadership development of pastors in southern Minnesota. The grant is part of Lilly Endowment’s Thriving in Ministry initiative. The initiative supports a variety of religious organizations across the nation as they help pastors build relationships with experienced clergy who can serve as mentors and guide them through key leadership challenges in congregational ministry. The grant to Gustavus will greatly expand the College’s Pastor-to-Pastor program to create a framework for professional development among clergy, known as the Continuous Growth Pathway program.

–St. Peter KNUJ Farm Families include: Pat and Ann Seitzer (2011), Jeff and Natalie Leonard and Doug and Nancy Wenner (2012), Annexstad Dairy Farm (2014), and Burt, Byron, and Bruce Norell (2016).

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