Sheldon Aubut's Duluth History
OUT OF THE GAIT - The first speeding ticket in Duluth, and possibly Minnesota
On January 6, 1872, the City Council imposed what turned out to be the first speeding ticket in Duluth. They had recently passed a law setting a speed limit of "the walking gait of a man" on Lake Avenue. A teamster named Trowbridge from Pratt & Co. was seen driving his team, on New Year's Day, at the breakneck speed of a fast walk. He was driving Mayor Clinton Markel, ex-mayor Culver, and William Nettleton on their New Year's rounds. When Officer Thompson saw this exhibition of speed he was greatly upset. Trowbridge was duly fined $5, plus a hefty $3 for court costs. That was one heck of a lot of money back then. Imagine what that would compare to today?
Trowbridge did not have such a handsome amount of money so the Mayors raised it in the local taverns to pay his fine.
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January 15, 2011
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