The History of Summit-University Neighborhood in St. Paul, Minnesota.

The Summit – university neighborhood is located in the 8th district in St. Paul in Minnesota. It lays along the Mississippi river. There are four sub-neighborhoods in Summit-university neighborhoods “Aurora/St. Anthony, Rondo, Ramsey hill/Cathedral hill, Selby-Dale”. The north boundary extends until university Avenue. The south side of this neighborhood reaches the summit Avenue which is the boundary between the summit hill neighborhood and summit-university neighborhood. The west side of Summit–university neighborhood extends to the Lexington parkway.

My visit of this neighborhood was one of my best experiences since I have been in Minnesota.  The neighborhood is so quiet, and peaceful. It has beautiful view where you can see most of down town St. Paul. The Mississippi river is also another site that contributes the beauty of the neighborhood.  As walk the streets of this neighborhood you will notice the diversity of this neighborhood. When we interviewed some of the residents of the neighborhood, we were so amazed how they were open and welcomed us. The neighborhood is mostly a residential place, although it contains some business and some historical places.

The neighborhood seemed to be divided into two parts; the eastern part which has some mansions with different styles and the western north part which has small houses.  In order to know more about the neighborhood, I did some research and as the Ramsey County Historical Society indicated, the why this small neighborhood was divided so greatly has is reflected the history some of the neighborhood. (Minnesota Historical society).

The neighborhood became residential area around 1850.The people who settled initially in the Summit area were farmers. One of farmers who settle initially in this neighborhood is a man called George Luckert. His house was built around 1850.  The Summit-university neighborhood changed dramatically when wealthy people living in the St. Paul business area, moved into the Summit neighborhood and built mansions that have different styles. In 1880, when the building streetcar line started, the composition of the community in this neighborhood changed and a lot of working class and middle classes moved in to the neighborhood.

The summit university neighborhood contains many historical buildings.  These historical buildings are found the eastern part of the neighborhood and view of them are found in the northern west due to demolition project that took place around 1960s. Some of these historical buildings are churches.

One of the well-known historic church is cathedral church (the above picture), which was built-in 1914. Another historical build is Gorge sawyer’s house which was built-in 1885.   

Today the neighborhood contained well maintained historical buildings and beautiful residential housings.  These houses contained both big, fancy, more expensive and small houses.  Most of big house are found the Eastern side of the neighborhood. The summit-university – neighborhood has small restaurant, bars, and markets. Some of the most famous business at this neighborhood are: A piece of cake baker, and Nina’s coffee. Most of these businesses populate along the Selby Avenue.  There are no big malls in the neighborhood but there small markets such as Mississippi market where the local community usually shops.

Some of the houses of this neighborhood are still well maintained and many people visit each year the historical places in this neighborhood.  One historical place that I like to mention is the governor’s house (the below picture).

governors house

This building was originally built as a family house in 1912, but now it is a place, where the Minnesota governor resides. It is located at 1006 Summit Avenue.  This house is a great historical building, which people visit each summer. This is a great place to visit.  It is usually open between the months of June and July through the summer for tours (

As almost every community in USA, the summit community was founded by immigrants, but due to the change of the immigration flow, the community seems to be change ethically. It seems to becoming heterogeneous, although there are some areas that are ethnically populated. The summit neighborhood is a community that meets and well-connected it has a bimonthly newspaper that they discuss about a few issues of the neighborhood, such as crime protection and volunteering (Summit hill News).

When I was doing the research I came across many historical photos, and the below photo is the one I liked the most. It was taken around 1903. As the summit planning council indicated, this photo shows the activates children used to do in past times “riding donkey instead of using telephones” and playing video games. Summit planning council. May be we need to know about the children‘s history!!!!!!.



  1. Ramsey Hill Association.
  2.  Summit University planning Council.
  3. Minnesota historical

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by | May 25, 2012 · 10:56 pm

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