CITY OF TRACY HISTORIC CONTEXT & SURVEY
Telling Minnesota's Stories
City of Tracy
1883 - 1960
Historical Research, Historic Context Study, Reconnaissance-Level Architectural-History Survey
A city’s downtown evolution tells the story of its resilience.
Historic districts and historic buildings can be building blocks for economic development. In 2020, the City of Tracy received a Minnesota Historical and Cultural Heritage Grant (“Legacy Grant”) for a reconnaissance-level architectural-history survey of commercial and civic buildings in their downtown. In order to better leverage the history of Tracy to plan for the future, the city needed to better understand its history and whether any of its downtown buildings might be eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.
New History completed historical research to develop a history of commercial and civic development in downtown Tracy. Founded as a railroad town, the City of Tracy sustained a thriving business district for decades, weathering a severe fire, the Great Depression, and an F5 tornado. After creating a framework for identifying historic properties, New History completed an on-site evaluation of 35 resources within Tracy’s downtown area. This reconnaissance-level survey resulted in the identification of several resources that appear eligible for the National Register. These findings positioned the city to move ahead with an intensive-level survey, the next step in the evaluation of these properties for National Register eligibility.