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On this day in 1881 ...

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Justus Ramsey, older brother of the first governor of the Minnesota Territory Alexander Ramsey, commits suicide.

Ramsey served in the the territorial legislature for three terms, and was one of a party that attempted to deliver a gold payment from the U.S. government to the Dakota Indians in 1862.

The payment of gold was delayed by the Civil War, and it caused near-starvation and deprivation amongst the Dakota community, part of what led to the U.S.-Dakota War.

Stricken by depression and heart disease, Ramsey shot himself on this day 133 years ago. The oldest house still standing in St. Paul belonged to Ramsey, a building on west seventh street he and two others purchased in 1849, Ramsey's first year in Minnesota.

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