Historical Mural & Videos
About the Mural Project
The Coon Rapids Historical Mural was painted by Helen Potter, employed as a community artist by the City of Coon Rapids during 1977 - 1978. The early photographs used on this historic mural were reproduced by DeFoe Studios.
The mural represents a timeline starting at 1857. It was in July 1857 that the area generally known today as Coon Rapids was organized as Anoka Township. Minor alterations of the boundary have been made since that time, notably the extraction of the area for the City of Anoka. Anoka Township became known as the Village of Coon Rapids in October of 1952 and the City of Coon Rapids in June 1959.
Finding the Information
Information for the mural was obtained from the Anoka County Historical Society, the Minnesota State Historical Society, and the Anoka, Blaine, and Coon Rapids newspapers. Other memorabilia were received from past and present citizens of Coon Rapids.
Other additional first-hand information was obtained by Mary Hauwiller, Charley Barney, and Mary Dweller, as well as members of the Coon Rapids Historical Commission of 1977 to 1978 for research-gathering and fact-finding efforts. The members were Owen Hyland, Chair, Roland Anderson, Nancy Lee, Alice Otis, George Otis, Adelaide Robinson, David Rolph, James Whitehead and Lorayne Zawistowski.
A 50% matching grant from the Minnesota State Historical Society funded the mural, while the remaining share came from the City of Coon Rapids by way of supplies and of time spent by the artist Helen Potter and the members of the Coon Rapids Historical Commission.
QR Code History Videos
Combine interesting stories, video and a smartphone and you have the makings of an interactive history lesson about the city of Coon Rapids! Thanks to QR code technology, anyone visiting Coon Rapids can learn about the city's history when visiting historical markers or the Coon Rapids Civic Center. QR codes placed on signs, are linked to videos on the City of Coon Rapids YouTube channel and can be easily seen by scanning the QR code with a smartphone. The Historical Commission completed this project in 2015 thanks to a grant from the Coon Rapids Lions Club and CTN - Coon Rapids, The Coon Rapids Community Television Network. The historical videos completed to date include The Coon Rapids Dam, The Clay Hole, Joyce Chapel, The Dunn House and the Brick Chimney. The videos can be viewed on the web pages that describe each of these landmarks.