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 Hamline Midway History Corps


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Special THANKS to History Corps members Steve & Nancy Bailey for sharing their wonderful collection of local matchbook covers!


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Sheet 1

Starting at University Avenue moving West from Lexington. Several highlights include the famed Prom Ballroom, and the Midway Pancake House, later to become Perkin's Pancake House. Also notable is the extravagantly designed cover for Napoleon's Cafe.

Another bit of Midway history is captured in the Midway Washmobile cover -- look for the mention, "Across from the Ball Park". This, of course, refers to the former Lexington Park.


Matchbooks - Sheet 1


Sheet 2

Continuing Westward on University, this one features several eating establishments include Napoleon's, The Blue Horse, Mickey's Cocktail Bar, the Porch Bar, and Sorini's Midway Pizza.

It is especially interesting to see some of the early phone numbers with exchanges such as "Nestor 3536".

Also note the item on the green Mickey's cover: "Opposite Montgomery Ward's".


Matchbooks - Sheet 2


Sheet 3

The collection arrives at the intersection of University and Snelling Avenues.

The Midway Department Store -- "the biggest little department store in Midway" -- leads them off. Also featured is the former Snyder Bros. Drugs.


Matchbook - Sheet 3


Sheet 4

This group includes the Turf Club and Midway Amusement Company, now the home of Axe Man Surplus.

The Midway Consumers Credit Co. offers loans from $50 to $5,000.

Esslinger's "Good Food and Liquors" sports a beautiful art deco design -- in both its matchbook and signage.


Matchbook - Sheet 4


Sheet 5

Several from other destinations across the neighborhood: Thor's Bakery and Fellner's Shell Service off Hamline & Thomas Avenues, and Raymond Autobody on Pierce Butler Route.

Also standing out in this group is Mr. Joe's Cocktail Lounge and Restaurant with Joe's welcoming mug.


Matchbook - Sheet 5


Sheet 6

Heading North on Snelling Avenue now, a few notable items: Svenden House Smorgasbord, Dey Appliance Parts (still around today), and Schoonover Auto Repair, now Shoreview (history & photos here).

Further up Snelling is Stern's Quality Tea Room Cafeteria, once the neighborhood branch library, now the Korean restaurant at Snelling & Van Buren. (A painted over sign for Quality Cafeteria still remains off the alley behind the restaurant.)


Matchbook - Sheet 6


Sheet 7

Two more covers for Stern's Quality Tea Room Cafeteria join Donner's Grocery and the Midway Motel in this set.

See also the oversized Snyder Bros. Midway Drug Store cover.


Matchbook - Sheet 7

Sheet 8

Two nearly identical covers for Midway National Bank show subtle differences: the address ("St. Paul 4") and phone numberss differ (with old-style on one, "Midway 6-2661"), each is made by Universal Match Corp. -- one in St. Paul, the other in Minneapolis.

And finally, Curly's Barber Shop -- a truly great name.


Matchbooks - Sheet 8


Hamline Midway History Corps
Saint Paul, Minnesota