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Coming to America 
In 1872, Eugene and his brother Joseph decided to leave France and join their relatives in the United States. They arrived in St,Paul at the beginning of 1873. Tromping through the snow, they found their way to their uncle’s establishment: Joseph Villaume-Hotel and Stabling. The three brothers had a joyous reunion. The outlook for jobs was excellent and the booming city needed workers. Houses and businesses were constantly being constructed, the first streetcars had appeared, and an expanding network of railroads was slowly connecting the city with the East and with its own growing economic hinterland. Boarding with -their uncle, the brothers got jobs at a Minneapolis sawmill. The next spring, Joseph, a trained cobbler, found work in St. Paul as a shoemaker and Eugene, who had apprenticed as a cabinetmaker in France, landed a job with the woodworking firm Osgood and Blodgett.

Eugene was an energetic and skilled worker and he learned a lot about production and finances. Eugene Villaume married Christine Moosbrugger in July 1877. She was a young woman of French-Austrian parentage who grew up on a farm in the northern part of Ramsey County. The Moosbruggers had come to Minnesota in 1854 and settled on a 160-acre farm in Little Canada. .


Eugene Villaume