So it turns out that Seward neighborhood in Minneapolis (my neighborhood!) was named after William H. Seward. Seward was widely expected to win the Republican nomination for the 1860 presidential election before a dark horse candidate named Abraham Lincoln snatched it from him at the last moment.
I’ve been reading about William Seward and his many admirers for awhile now in Team of Rivals, a biography of Lincoln and his political rivals. I kept wondering if this person who came so close to serving as President during the Civil War was the inspiration for the name of my Minneapolis neighborhood. Turns out, it is! I liked my area before, but I’ve got even more pride now that I know it was named after such a tireless and brilliant public servant and abolitionist. His whole life had been building towards the presidency, and his defeat in 1860 crushed and humiliated him. Yet he picked up the pieces and continued serving as Secretary of State during the most turbulent periods of US History. Go Seward!