Part of the Mississippi National River & Recreation Area of the National Park Service and on the National Register of Historic Places is the iconic Minnehaha Falls. It has been a Minnesota Landmark since 1855 when Henry Wadsworth Longfellow featured the falls in his poem 'The Song of Hiawatha':
In the land of the Dacotahs,
Where the Falls of Minnehaha
Flash and gleam among the oak-trees,
Laugh and leap into the valley.
There the ancient Arrow-maker
Made his arrow-heads of sandstone,
Arrow-heads of chalcedony,
Arrow-heads of flint and jasper,
Smoothed and sharpened at the edges,
Hard and polished, keen and costly.
With him dwelt his dark-eyed daughter,
Wayward as the Minnehaha,
With her moods of shade and sunshine,
Eyes that smiled and frowned alternate,
Feet as rapid as the river,
Tresses flowing like the water,
And as musical a laughter;
And he named her from the river,
From the water-fall he named her,
Minnehaha, Laughing Water.
Though Longfellow never made it to the falls himself, people flocked here. It has been featured in Travel Guides ever since along the likes of Yosemite National Park. More than 850,000 people visit each year making it the most photographed place in Minnesota.