Red Wing is a city in Goodhue County, Minnesota, United States, on the Mississippi River. The population was 16,116 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Goodhue County. Red Wing is home of Red Wing Shoes, the Riedell Ice and Roller Skates and Red Wing Stoneware. The Cannon Valley Trail has its eastern terminus in Red Wing. Treasure Island Resort & Casino is on the nearby Prairie Island Indian Reservation. The National Trust for Historic Preservation placed Red Wing on its 2008 distinctive destinations list, which adds 12 communities annually nationwide. Red Wing was added for its "impressive architecture and enviable natural environment. Red Wing is connected to Wisconsin by Red Wing Bridge.
The first settlers in town built small mills, factories, and workshops, similar to ones they were familiar with in New England where many came from. Immigrants from Germany, Ireland, and Sweden were also skilled craftsman. Some early and persistent industries are tanning and shoe-making. Other businessmen made farm equipment, bricks, barrels, boats, furniture, pottery, and buttons. Consumables included beer and lumber. Service industries including stone-cutting, hospitality, and retailing. The Saint James Hotel remains a working token of the earlier time.
Red Wing was once home to Hamline University, founded in 1854 as the first institution of higher education in the state of Minnesota. It closed in 1869 because of low enrollment due to the American Civil War. It was chartered in St. Paul in 1871 and reopened in 1880 there.
Red Wing was also home to Gustavus Adolphus College, a private liberal arts college of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA). The college was founded in Red Wing in 1862 by Eric Norelius, but moved to East Union in 1863 before settling in St Peter in 1876.
The Red Wing stoneware and pottery industry developed on the northwest of the city, close to Hay Creek. The clay was near the headwaters of Hay Creek, close to Goodhue, near a hamlet named Claybank. A railroad branch line was built to carry clay to Red Wing. The factory buildings remain, but only traces of the railroad, which was abandoned in 1937.
There were 6,562 households of which 30.4% had children under18 with them, 51.2% were married couples living together, 8.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.5% were non-families. 30.7% of all households were of individuals and 13.3% had someone living alone 65 or older. The average household size was 2.35 and the average family 2.94.
In the city the population was 24.6% under18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 27.5% from 25 to 44, 23.2% from 45 to 64, and 16.5% 65 or older. The median was 39. For every 100 females there were 93.5 males. For every 100 females 18 and over, there were 90.6 males.
The median income for a household was $43,674, and the median for a family was $54,641. Males had a median of $36,576 versus $25,477 for females. The per capita income was $21,678. About 3.9% of families and 6.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.9% of those under age 18 and 8.0% of those 65 or over.
Wisconsin Highway 35 is nearby.
Red Wing has a youth government that helps protect youth interest in city council meetings