Archive for the ‘Water Towers’ Category

Tower View near Red Wing

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

If you happen to find yourself traveling to Red Wing, Minnesota you cannot miss the large brick tower rising out of the trees, nestled among various buildings and a main house. Built by Alexander Pierce Anderson between 1915-1921, the Tower View complex consists of the larger water tower, main house, and out buildings, not to mention underground tunnels connecting each building. The property was used as a working farm, laboratory, and homestead for the Anderson family.

Mr. Anderson was an inventor of Swedish decent who grew up working on the family farm, later attending the University of Minnesota where he earned his B.S. in Botany in 1894, and a M.S. a year later. The Anderson Puffed Rice Company was created in 1901 where he utilized his invention of puffed rice and some 25 patents on the process. He purchased the current property between 1910-1920, and proceeded to build the complex seen today, including a large Georgian Revival style home where his family lived.

In 1997, a huge restoration and renovation process began which encompassed the entire property. Tunnels were restored and reopened, and each building received some type of renovation. The Tower View, all 330 acres of it, is currently being used as the Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies.

More information can be found about Alexander Anderson on the MNHS.org website, and you can also view a photo of the home from 1950.

Tower Hill Water Tower – Minneapolis

Saturday, August 16th, 2008

Built in 1913 by the Minneapolis Parks Board, the hill on which the tower stands was purchased in 1906 to increase water pressure to Prospect Park. It occupies the highest natural land area in Minneapolis. City engineer and Norwegian architect Frederick Cappelen designed the structure and gave it some Gothic flair by topping it with a Witch’s Hat roof covered in green tile.

Easily known as the Witch’s Hat Tower, the building stands 107 feet high and grants visitors some amazing views of the Minneapolis skyline and surrounding neighborhoods. When driving east on I-94 from downtown, you can see the “hat” peeking out of the trees. The tower was decommissioned in 1952, with plans for tearing the structure down in the works. Thankfully, when local neighbors got wind of the plan, they lobbied to save the water tower, which is now a wonderful neighborhood park and gathering area.

Tower Hill Park and the Witch’s Hat Water Tower are now listed on the National Registrar of Historic Places, and is located at 55 Malcolm Ave SE.