(l-r) George, Eddie, Ben, Adolph, Leo, "Granpa" Frank, Ernie, Claude.
New Trier is one of the oldest towns in Minnesota and is named after the city located along the Mosel River on the border with Luxembourg
Settlement began in the mid-1850s with immigration from Luxembourg and Prussia. Some of these early settlers began their American life as laborers in Stillwater, but soon established farms and incorporated their town, giving its name after splitting between New Luxembourg and Trier. Finally the first pastor of the church, George Kelle, decided on the name on 15 May, 1856. The St. Mary’s Catholic Church is prominent. It began as a log cabin, then a wood frame, then the current church dedicated in 1912. It is the tallest landmark in Dakota County.
The New Trier area was settled beginning in the mid 1800s by European immigrants, predominantly from German and Luxembourg. Reasons cited by the new settlers for emigrating to the heartland of America included the following: 1) The promise of free homesteads or cheap fertile, farmland in order to provide better living conditions for their families, 2) To seek a more favorable form of democratic government, and 3) As a way for young men to evade compulsory military service. Following the erection of a log church in 1855, and recognizing that a community center or village was in the making, the settlers of that territory held a mass meeting in an effort to decide what name should be given to the developing village. A poll of the settlers present showed that a large majority were from Trier (Germany), so it was easy to name the new community center New Trier (Hastings Gazette – October 4, 1935).
By 1874, when it was incorporated, New Trier reportedly had two hotels, wagon shops, stores, cheese factory, dance hall, and “at least seven saloons.” By the turn of the century, the population had risen to more than 700. However, the accident of railroad expansion to the west of the village (in Hampton), left the center of New Trier off the transportation routes and meant the cessation, at least for a time, of much of its business (Hastings Gazette – October 4, 1935). The original log church had soon been replaced by a more becoming frame building, which in turn was replaced by a stone structure. This sufficed for the congregation until 1909, when the need for a new church better adapted to the requirements of the parish and more in keeping with the prosperity of the people became apparent, and the present Renaissance-style structure was built. This building was dedicated by Archbishop John Ireland of St. Paul in November of 1912.