Here are four pages of pure history, even if you're not from St Cloud, Minnesota and don't recognize any of the names and businesses. It's a snapshot of a Minnesota population in 1938-39 who were mostly the children of immigrants. I see clear evidence of the German influence, as in the listing for Northern Pacific Ry where the freight and passenger depot is 551 and 555 do (ditto). I see the name of a woman who was old when I was a young aide at Good Shepherd Nursing Home in the 60s. I see companies that have survived, and companies that haven't, even tho they were in business when we were kids. Most of the occupations (slsmn, instr, formn, lab, atndt, tchr, plstr, mgr, hlpr, mach) are still around, but listing them pretty much meant they were permanent jobs--chances are if you were a carp this year, you'd stay a carp in the future.
I marvel at how people were listed as "moved to Alexandria" or "died April 1935, age 69"...or "wid Frank J". It really was a small town then.
See who the big employers were in 1939? The granite industry, railroads, the VA, retailers, NSP, Northwestern Bell Tel, not to mention the endless insurance companies.
'Course, Klock's Tick Tock Cafe, the Powder Puff Beauty Salon, the Lily White Laundry and the OK Cafe employed people, too.
Isn't this just COOL?