Home Remodeling and Renovation in
Stillwater Lift Bridge, Stillwater, MN
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Stillwater is a city in Washington County, Minnesota, directly across the St. Croix River from the state of Wisconsin, located just 20 miles east of downtown St. Paul and is the seat of Washington County. Stillwater is part of the Twin Cities Metro Area.
The town was founded by settlers drawn by the area's abundant lumber and river traffic, making it one of Minnesota's oldest towns, predating Minneapolis by several years. Stillwater was officially incorporated as a city March 4, 1854 (the same day as St. Paul). At that time it was the largest incorporated area in the state. In 1848, a territorial convention that began the process of establishing Minnesota as a state was held in Stillwater at the corner of Myrtle and Main Streets. Minnesota officially became a territory in 1849 and became a state in 1858.
Railroads arrived in Stillwater in the early 1870s, expanding markets for timber and manufactured goods. Soon the city was connected to Chicago through the Milwaukee road (via Lakeland and Hastings). Manufactured products ranging from lumber and shingles, windows and doors, to furniture and flooring, were shipped to customers in Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska, and Dakota Territory via rail.
Stillwater entered a golden age that produced the biggest opera house west of Chicago and many magnificent brick buildings on Main Street. Stillwater had gas lights in 1875, telephone service downtown in 1878, and the first electric lights west of Chicago in 1888. The city also boasted as many as 46 saloons and was home to six breweries. In 1889, the first electric street railway in Minnesota began operation in Stillwater.
By 1900 the lumber was giving out and the mills closed. However, the population began to recover after World War II when roads and automobiles put residents in commuting range of the Twin Cities. Stillwater began to reinvent itself as a tourist destination. Old buildings were torn down and others were reused. Shops were installed in the old utility buildings and mills, and in its third century, Stillwater has become a bustling community boasting a variety of industry and business from automotive and plastics technology to government, banking, and medical services.