Minnie Wagner was born in Ogle County, Illinois
in 1860, the daughter of Mariah Jane Blair and David Charles Wagner.
Her earliest memory was of her father returning home from the Civil War.
Her mother died not long after the war and her father married Anna Thompson
Minnie spent much of her adolescence in Chicago, Illinois. She attended
school at the University of Chicago and the Women's College of Northwestern University
where she was a member of the class of 1883. Before she graduated she left
to spend a year in France with an aunt. When she returned in 1884 she married Samuel
Wells Anderson who was from La Crosse, Wisconsin.
Samuel Anderson's family and
Minnie's step-grandparents were early settler's in
the La Crosse area so the place was familiar to
her. Her brother, Frank, had also attended school for a time in La Crosse.
Samuel's father, Mons Anderson, owned a large General Store and garment factory in
La Crosse. Samuel and Minnie spent their entire married life in La Crosse and raised a
family of five daughters and one son. Their youngest daughter, Janet
Alice Anderson Caldwell, received her medical degree in 1920 and was one of the first 100 women
fliers in the United States.
Samuel died August 16, 1927 and Minnie left La Crosse to live with her daughter, Hattie Rebecca Anderson, in Boulder, Colorado.
She lived there until her death in April 1945. She is buried next to her husband
in La Crosse, Wisconsin.