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Same sex weddings that begin Thursday won't be Minnesota's first

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Same sex couples that have campaigned for the right to marry in Minnesota will see their goal realized when a new state law takes effect Thursday. But there is a precedent.

More than 40 years ago two Minnesota men were issued a marriage license in Mankato, tied the knot in Minneapols, and remain together to this day, WCCO reports. Footage from the 1971 ceremony was featured in a story the station did on the pair a couple of years later. This week the minister who presided at the event reminisced about it and told of the hate mail he subsequently received.

The state Supreme Court subsequently ruled that only opposite sex marriages were legal in Minnesota. But as Forum News Service reports, one of the men - Jack Baker - writes in his blog that the license was never revoked. Baker maintains that his union with Michael McConnell was the first legal gay marriage and that it remains in effect.

Since then, plenty of same sex couples have held ceremonial events to formalize their commitment. The Associated Press reports some plan to renew their vows now that their marriages will be legal.

Minnesota weddings are scheduled beginning at midnight Thursday and will continue through the night.

Here's 'CCO's look back at the Baker-McConnell wedding:

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