City of Parks

City of Parks: The Story of Minneapolis Parks
by David C. Smith

Praise for City of Parks

“Virtually everything about his book is first-rate…Most important, the book is an enjoyable read…With an easy, fluid writing style Smith carries readers through a story anchored by visionary personalities, prominent individuals who played substantial roles in the formation of the Minneapolis park system…His social and political analysis of the major players and actions that shaped the Minneapolis park system is fascinating.”

— Denis Gardner, Minnesota History, Winter 2009-2010

“An excellent history of the Minneapolis park system…we use it as a reference often here in Special Collections.”

—, posted June 25, 2011, a blog of the Hennepin County Public Library

“A thoughtful and comprehensive history of our park system.”

— Craig Cox, Minneapolis Observer Quarterly, Summer 2009

“A fine new book.”

— Lori Sturdevant, Star Tribune, May 31, 2009

“A big coffee table tome with photos galore and a very intelligent text.”

— Dave Wood, syndicated book critic and former book review editor of Star Tribune, Farmington Independent, April 15, 2009


City of Parks: The Story of Minneapolis Parks was published by the Foundation for Minneapolis Parks to commemorate the 125th Anniversary of the creation of the Minneapolis Board of Park Commissioners. The Minnesota legislature created the Board by legislation in 1883 and it was ratified by Minneapolis voters on April 3, 1883. The book is distributed by the University of Minnesota Press and is available at book stores in Minnesota and online through major booksellers.

1 comment so far

  1. Neal Baxter on

    What a wonderful site! I’ve never seen a picture of Rauen’s house before, nor this view of Virginia Triangle. I fondly remember my mother, an otherwise very polished lady, opening the car door as we drove through the Bottle Neck and spitting on the street. I took this as a critique. In memory she carried out this act of defiance each time we crossed the intersection of Lyndale & Hennepin.

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