This afternoon Pioneer Public TV aired a production from Okabena Media about George Dayton, founder of the Dayton Department store, and the grand Victorian mansion he built in Worthington, Minnesota. The 30 minute video, directed by Ray Lowry, has a lot of historical information about George Dayton (great grandfather of former Minnesota Senator Mark Dayton) and his role in the development of the city of Worthington. Basically a slide-show with a narrative, I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t more pictures of the Dayton house, however the information presented was good and gives a look at the struggles of the pioneers on prairie.
Like many residents of southwest Minnesota, I remember the home as the Cashel Nursing Home. Ruth Cashel owned and operated the home and I remember meeting her when I worked in Worthington at a former job. My impression of her is of a strong, independent, feisty woman. She was a frequent letter writer to the local newspaper and wasn’t afraid to voice an unpopular opinion. Her husband, John Cashel, was a Minnesota state senator.
You can view the video online at Okabena Media by clicking on the films link. The Historic Dayton House has a website which has a history of the house and its residents and you can also take a virtual tour. More information of Ruth Cashel is on the site as well as other residents of the home.
Historic Worthington, Inc., the non-profit organization that restored and preserved the home, deserves hearty congratulations for making this piece of history available to the public.
Peace & solidarity,