The Minnesota

​Territorial Pioneers

Established May 11, 1897 - Incorporated 1924

1992 Minnesotan of the Year

Jon Hassler 1933-2008


Jon Hassler was selected by the Awards Committee as the Minnesotan of the Year for 1992.  The selection was announced at the Annual Meeting of the Minnesota Territorial Pioneers by Richard Husband chair of the selection committee.  Mr. Hassler was unable to be present but sent a recording which was played at the meeting. 

 He used small towns in the Midwest as settings for his novels and wrote about the relationships, thoughts and feelings of the people living in them.  He drew on his experiences teaching in a series of small Minnesota towns to create his word pictures of small town life. Some of the novels that he has written are: Staggerford,  Simon’s Night, Jemmy, The Love Hunter and A Green Journey.

Jon Hassler was born in Minneapolis on March 30, 1933.  He received his B.A. degree from St. John’s University at Collegeville, Minnesota and his M.A. degree from the University of North Dakota.  He taught English at Melrose, Fosston and Park Rapids High Schools and at Brainerd Community College, Bemidji State University, ending his education career as a regent professor at his alma mater, St. John’s University.  He published more than 15 works of fiction for adults and young adults. 

Previous Award Recipients

Minnesotan of the Year