Noerenberg Gardens

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Noerenberg Gardens

Frederick D. Noerenberg was born in Bietzicker Provinz Poomern, Prussia in 1845.  He came to America with his family in 1860. Noerenberg spent time as a day laborer and worked at Stahlman’s Brewery. From 1870-1875 he kept a hotel in St. Paul.

In 1875 he moved to Minneapolis and ran the Zahler and Noerenberg Brewery until 1891 when it merged into the Minneapolis Brewing Company. He was elected vice-president and later served as president.

After the merger, the Minneapolis Brewing Company did not need the old Noerenberg brewery at Bluff Street and 20th Avenue, it was sold to the Imperial Brewing Company which made English style ales, porters and stouts.  Imperial misjudged the demand for English style beers in Minneapolis and when it closed in 1905 they dumped 32,000 gallons into the Mississippi river.  The poultry kept at nearby Bohemian Flats became intoxicated for a short while.

In 1878 Frederick married Johanna Sprungmann of Minneapolis.  Both lovers of nature, they later moved to an estate at Crystal Bay, Lake Minnetonka,Wilkommen. The estate spanned 73 acres, containing nearly 8,500 feet of shoreline and featured a Queen Anne style home.

The home was razed according to will of Lora Noerenberg Hoppe (daughter of Frederick and Johanna), the last resident of the home.  The estate was donated to the Three Rivers Parks District in 1972. Ray Forde, long time gardener for the Noerenbergs, stayed on when the estate became the Noerenberg Memorial Park. He started while in high school in 1927 and was trained by Lora Noerenberg, who had a horticultural background.

Today the gardens are open 8 am to sunset, May 1-October 15. The boathouse remains from the old estate and was restored in 1985.