IGSI’s Annual Fall Gathering with speaker will be held on Saturday afternoon, 25 October, from 1:00 to 3:00 PM in the Ethel M. Berry meeting room at the Southdale Library in Edina (near Southdale Shopping Center).
After a short business meeting, local author Penny A. Petersen will discuss her research for her most recent book, Minneapolis Madams: the Lost History of Prostitution on the Riverfront. Petersen probes the 19th century ecosystem of brothels and streetwalkers with a keen eye for political hypocrisy, sexual double standards, racial prejudice, and gender-driven economics. A gem of sexual and social history, this book illuminates the boudoirs of the long-forgotten red-light districts with insight, wit, and humanity. This nearly forgotten chapter of Minneapolis history traces how the “houses of ill fame” rose to prominence in the late 19th century before being shut down in the early 20th century.
Penny A. Petersen is a researcher for a historical consulting company in Minneapolis. She is the author of Hiding in Plain Sight: Minneapolis’ First Neighborhood, a history of the Marcy–Holmes neighborhood. She has worked as an historic site interpreter and site technician for the Minnesota Historical Society at St. Anthony Falls.