Comrades in Arms

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Saturday December 13, 2008. A meeting at La Vina restaurant on 30th and 4th Avenue South…sponsored by CANDO, the Central area neighborhood organization. I learned of the meeting from a post by Connie Nompelis, (the CANDO housing committee chair) on the e-democracy.org/mpls discussion list.

It was my first meeting with Brian, Connie, Ryan and Montana…all young neighborhood activists, historians and preservationists.

Journalist and theater artist Shelia Regan listened, spoke to several people and took notes in preparation for the first of many articles she wrote about the Pauline Fjelde house and the Fjelde advocates for the TCdaily planet.

Also there were veteran preservationists, Bob Glancy and Corrine Zala.
Joel Baird, the founder of the Minneapolis Historic Homeowners Association,intended
to start a support group for people renovating historic homes.
Instead the group became a grassroots advocacy focused on the rescue of the Fjelde house.

Also present was the man who was once an advocate for preservation, but earning no money from it, was very well paid to aggressively and relentlessly achieve the destruction of the Pauline Fjelde house …attorney Daniel Kennedy.

The owners of the house, James and Kristin Schoffman, invited us to see that it was demolition ready…we disagreed. We were certain we could save the house.

Although I had a camera, I took no photos that day…an oversight I have never repeated.

In a dark corner behind a knee wall in the attic…I discovered a steamer trunk….

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