Police offer reward for information in arsons at historic Stevens House in Minneapolis

Minneapolis Park Police are asking for the public's help to make an arrest in a series of arsons at the historic John H. Stevens House at Minnehaha Park.

The Stevens House, one of the first homes built by settlers in Minnesota and considered to be the "birthplace of Minneapolis", was set on fire three times between late August and early October. All three fires were set in the early morning hours.

The first fire was reported on August 30 around 4:53 a.m., the second exactly three weeks later on September 20 around 3:10 a.m., and, less than two weeks later, the third fire was reported around 3:41 a.m. on October 1.

Police say the investigation into the fire is ongoing. They are asking anyone who might have information that could aid the investigation to call 1-800-723-2020. Park police say information submitted leading to the identity of the arsonist would be eligible for a $5,000 reward.

To prevent further fires, the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board has put a fence up around the historic house. The house was still in the midst of repairs when the second and third fires started.

The Stevens House was built in 1849 near St. Anthony Falls and later moved to its current location off South Minnehaha Park Drive in 1896.