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Minnesota Author Biographies

Books

Minnesota can claim a very long and fruitful literary history, whatever the subject or form. From Father Hennepin’s first appearance in print in 1683 through the 1920s when giants like Sinclair Lewis, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and O. E. Rolvaag were best sellers to the current crop of local mystery writers, Minnesota has contributed more than its share to American letters. The Minnesota Historical Society has identified more than 3,500 authors worthy of attention, all but a handful of them forgotten today. Through their work, these men and women contributed to the knowledge about Minnesota and our culture. Since all writers stand on the shoulders of those who came before them, these authors deserve and demand to be read in order to understand contemporary Minnesota books, authors, and life.   

To accomplish this lofty objective, the Minnesota Historical Society Library makes a herculean effort to find, acquire, catalog, preserve, and make available these books. We also consider it our mission to educate the public about the significance of these works and their authors. We hope to facilitate a deeper understanding of our intellectual and cultural past by encouraging use of the MHS Library and through a variety of web projects that extend our reach. We will continue adding biographies here as time and finances permit, and we encourage users to participate by suggesting authors to prioritize as we move forward with this project.