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The Sioux Tribe were the first inhabitants of the area that we know today as Minneapolis. There they hunted and farmed until the arrival of French missionary Father Louis Hennepin in 1680, who was exploring the Mississippi River when he found a waterfall. The waterfall, named St. Anthony Falls was a deciding factor in establishing a city at the site.
Permanent settlements in the area were first established in 1820, when Federal troops built Fort St. Anthony.
In the early 19th century, the first major industries of the area developed, which were flour milling and lumber. St. Anthony Falls provided these industries with power. After the introduction of these industries, the city began rapidly growing. In 1849 the settlement was named the Village of All Saints, but in 1856 was changed to its present name of Minneapolis. In 1872, the city grew larger and spread to both sides of the Mississippi River.
Many Scandinavian immigrants came to Minneapolis after the civil war, and their influence is still felt throughout the city.
The flour industry continued to boom in the area, and the city rapidly grew during the late 1800s. By 1882, Minneapolis became the world’s headquarter for the flour milling industry. At the beginning of the 20th century, Minneapolis also became the world’s leading lumber producer, but production soon after declined with the depletion of local forest lands.
During the 1960s and 70s, Minneapolis transitioned towards producing electronic equipment and farm machinery, which spurred the rapid development of urban areas surrounding the city.