Capitol shenanigans remind Channel 5 of 1857 Rolette disappearing act

We may think this legislative session is crazy: up and down emotions on a stadium that’s hare-brained one minute, workable the next and off the table the next morning. Taxes and bonding bills, too, are trending on Twitter even if action wanes.

But many of us remember from eigth-grade Minnesota history what may be the wackiest legislative move ever: how Joe Rolette stole the bill from the Territorial Legislature that would have moved the state capital to St. Peter in 1857.

Channel 5 news reminded us of the drama in a news story Wednesday night.

Rolette didn’t like the idea of moving the state Capital from St. Paul, so he disappeared with the only copy of the passed legislation until it was too late to be signed into law.

So that’s why, to this day, St. Paul remains the place where we get to watch and marvel at lawmakers trying to make laws.

You can also learn about all our free newsletter options.

Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Logan Foreman on 05/03/2012 - 01:22 pm.


    Would feel comfortable with this wacky group of Republicans, who are now entitled exclusively to the title of the “goofiest legislators of all time.”

Leave a Reply