Douglas County Historical Society MN

Douglas County Historical Society MN We are on Twitter too! Follow us at twitter.com/dchsmn
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The mission of the Douglas County Historical Society is to discover, preserve and disseminate the history of Douglas County, Minnesota. DCHS is headquartered in the historic home of Douglas County's Statesman, Sen. Knute Nelson, a two-term MN State Legislator, the State's only foreign-born Governor, and also United States Senator for 28 years. Located at 1219 Nokomis Street, Alexandria, MN, visitors enjoy selected exhibits as well as a public history and genealogy research center. The Douglas County Historical Society has a wealth of information about the county’s history with resources for individuals, families, businesses, organizations, schools, churches and more. It is also a warm and welcoming environment for special events and small group gatherings. The Douglas County Historical Society (DCHS) is a non-profit organization which relies on your donations to support programs, preservation, research and Knute Nelson's Historic House and Spruce Hill Church.

Today is National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day! We thank those who put their lives on the line every day for our com...
01/09/2020

Today is National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day! We thank those who put their lives on the line every day for our communities. Sometimes we as citizens can have disagreements with our LEO neighbors - or be annoyed at that speeding ticket - but at the end of the day, we're beyond thankful to have helpers and defenders in our emergencies and most difficult moments.

We found this photo of a dressed-up dog tucked away in our Forada box. Was this dog a famous Forada resident? We would L...
01/08/2020

We found this photo of a dressed-up dog tucked away in our Forada box. Was this dog a famous Forada resident? We would LOVE to know!

There's still plenty of time to organize a hotdish team for our Great Hotdish Bake-Off! If you need inspiration, why not...
01/06/2020

There's still plenty of time to organize a hotdish team for our Great Hotdish Bake-Off! If you need inspiration, why not look at the first place recipe from last year...

Knute Nelson's 1st Place Chicken Bacon Ranch Hotdish

Ingredients:
• 8 cups Rotini Noodles
• 4 Chicken Breast
• 4 cups Simple Homemade Alfredo Sauce
• 1 cup of Homemade Ranch Dressing
• 1 1/2 cup of Bacon - separate
• 2 cups of shredded cheese
• Topping- 2 cups of shredded cheese and 1/2 cup of chopped bacon

Steps:
• Cook 8 cups of rotini noodles until tender, set aside.
• Cook 4 chicken breasts thoroughly, season lightly, cool and chop into bite sized pieces.
• Cook bacon until crispy. Cool and chop well. Reserve 1/2 cup of chopped bacon for the topping.
• Mix rotini, chopped chicken, homemade alfredo sauce, homemade ranch dressing and 1 cup of bacon crumbles gently together.
• Place in a baking pan and bake at 350 for 30 mins.
• Garnish with remaining bacon and 2 cups of shredded cheese. Place bake in the oven until cheese is melted.

Ice Harvest near Alexandria ca. 1910, Lake Agnes, with Alexandria in the distance.
01/03/2020

Ice Harvest near Alexandria ca. 1910, Lake Agnes, with Alexandria in the distance.

We are counting down until the 2nd Annual Great Hotdish Bake-Off! Only 30 days remain! Is your group or church intereste...
01/02/2020

We are counting down until the 2nd Annual Great Hotdish Bake-Off! Only 30 days remain! Is your group or church interested in bringing a hotdish team this year? Is your business interested in donating to our silent auction? Let us know at [email protected] or call us at 320-762-0382.

Happy New Year and Happy Rose Bowl! 30 years ago some happy band students were Rose Bowl bound and advertised this fact ...
01/01/2020

Happy New Year and Happy Rose Bowl! 30 years ago some happy band students were Rose Bowl bound and advertised this fact on (what else) the side of a snowbank. For bonus points, does anyone remember (without google!) who played that year?

Happy New Year's Eve to everyone! See you all next decade! Thank you for all the fantastic memories shared in the past y...
12/31/2019

Happy New Year's Eve to everyone! See you all next decade! Thank you for all the fantastic memories shared in the past year and beyond - we can't wait to see what comes next.

It's certainly cold enough! Perhaps grab some skates and a friend like these ladies did and enjoy some ice skating this ...
12/27/2019

It's certainly cold enough! Perhaps grab some skates and a friend like these ladies did and enjoy some ice skating this weekend!

12/26/2019

The day after Christmas is the national day of the Thank You Note - so let us begin with ours!

Firstly, thank you to our volunteers. You donated hundreds of hours of your time this year. You compiled research, helped us clean, helped us prepare events. You sat with us on the porch in the rain, you met patrons and visitors with smiles and knowledge. You adapted to whatever was needed most and you did it all without expecting anything in return. Thank you.

Our donors and sponsors - thank you. Thank you for your generosity in supporting local history to ensure we can continue to preserve and educate about Douglas County's history. We aren't just a community resource, but part of the community, and we wouldn't exist without your support.

Our patrons and visitors - thank you for making time in your life for local history. Whether you came for a tour, an event, or an extended look at your genealogy, your time with us is the highlight of our days. We're here to ensure local history is shared and appreciated - we can't do that without you.

Our board members - thank you for your wisdom, patience, and time in organizing and managing the Historical Society.

2019 was a great year to round off a great decade. There were changes. There were ups and downs. There was tragedy and there was joy. Our final thank you is to the community - because with a strong community, we can overcome anything and continue to thrive in the next decade.

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through Knute’s houseNot a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;The collec...
12/24/2019

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through Knute’s house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The collections were nestled all snug in their shelves;
The two sealed-up fireplaces confused a few elves,
At the front door there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my desk to see what was the matter.
As I opened the door and was looking around,
‘Cross the porch St. Nicholas came with a bound.
“Your chimneys are stopped,” he explained with gentility,
“I know,” said I, “Open flame is an insurance liability.”
He had a broad face and a little round belly
That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.
“Naturally,” he said, “Change can be a mystery.”
“Well,” I said, “That’s why we have history.
Knute Nelson’s house here is more than a century old,
Can you imagine all the stories it’s told?
From fire to electric, and horses to cars,
There’s so much to learn in this county of ours.”
“I’m thankful there’s good folks here to remember,
But I’d better get going – I only work in December.”
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight—
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

(Remember we are closed Dec 23-25!) Here's some more Christmas nostalgia for you - Decorations from 1951, when the Knute...
12/23/2019

(Remember we are closed Dec 23-25!) Here's some more Christmas nostalgia for you - Decorations from 1951, when the Knute Nelson house served as the first iteration of the Knute Nelson Memorial Home for the Aged. A keen observer may be able to spot the decorated coffeepot in the back, on top of the wooden buffet... It just so happens that this coffee pot was donated to the Douglas County Historical Society this year, after being on display at Nelson Gables for years! Talk about a Christmas Miracle!

Today is the Winter Solstice - the longest night of the year and the official "start" to winter. (October would like a w...
12/21/2019

Today is the Winter Solstice - the longest night of the year and the official "start" to winter. (October would like a word...)
What's your favorite activity in winter? Skiing? Snowmobiling? Ice fishing? Staying inside with a good book or movie? Pictured below is Ardis Wells with her team of sled dogs, enjoying the Minnesota winter!

Happy Ugly Sweater Day from your Museum & History Friends in Douglas County! From left to right: Brittany Johnson (DCHS)...
12/20/2019

Happy Ugly Sweater Day from your Museum & History Friends in Douglas County! From left to right: Brittany Johnson (DCHS), Felicia Fredrickson (Runestone Museum), Kaci Johnson (Legacy of the Lakes Museum), Amanda Seim (Runestone Museum). DCHS will be closed December 23-25 for the holidays. Thank you! Runestone Museum Foundation Legacy of The Lakes Museum

If you missed our Bake Sale, now's a good time to get your last minute goodies at the Runestone Museum, having their own...
12/20/2019

If you missed our Bake Sale, now's a good time to get your last minute goodies at the Runestone Museum, having their own bake sale today at their location across from Big Ole!

Bake Sale happening now at the Runestone Museum until supplies last! We accept cash, check or charge!

Vintage Christmas Cards!Day 3 of 3One last day of vintage cards! Sometimes the details are the best - the second one her...
12/20/2019

Vintage Christmas Cards!
Day 3 of 3
One last day of vintage cards! Sometimes the details are the best - the second one here has real feathers on it. Cards are all 1908-1935 with year and recipient indicated on each picture if known.

Vintage Christmas Cards!Day 2 of 3There's something refreshing about cards in the mail! Do you do your own holiday cards...
12/19/2019

Vintage Christmas Cards!
Day 2 of 3
There's something refreshing about cards in the mail! Do you do your own holiday cards? Early, or last minute? Cards are all 1908-1935 with year and recipient indicated on each picture if known.

Heard Brittany mention the Statewide Historic Preservation Plan on KXRA? Here's where you can complete a survey to let t...
12/19/2019
Statewide Preservation Plan 2020-2030 / Minnesota State Historic Preservation Office

Heard Brittany mention the Statewide Historic Preservation Plan on KXRA? Here's where you can complete a survey to let the folks at the State Historic Preservation Office know what your perspective is on historic preservation in Minnesota: https://mn.gov/admin/shpo/planning/statewide-plan-new/

The Minnesota State Historic Preservation Office is updating its existing statewide preservation plan. Learn more about the statewide plan and how to share your vision from now until Fall 2020.

Vintage Christmas Cards!Day 1 of 3Do you have a strong holiday card tradition? Or perhaps you remember your parents spen...
12/18/2019

Vintage Christmas Cards!
Day 1 of 3
Do you have a strong holiday card tradition? Or perhaps you remember your parents spending hours writing cards and letters to seemingly every relative? Cards are all 1908-1935 with year indicated on each picture if known.

Perhaps some pictures need no caption. ;)
12/17/2019

Perhaps some pictures need no caption. ;)

Douglas County Historical Society MN's cover photo
12/16/2019

Douglas County Historical Society MN's cover photo

Important information for genealogists: USCIS is considering raising fees for genealogy materials held at US Citizenship...
12/16/2019
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Fee Schedule and Changes to Certain Other Immigration Benefit Request Requirements

Important information for genealogists: USCIS is considering raising fees for genealogy materials held at US Citizenship and Immigration Services by nearly 500%. Information access may go up to $625 per page. We know that genealogy can get expensive, especially if you have a large family, so we want to make sure our genealogist followers have a chance to respond to the proposal. If you would like to comment on this proposal or find out more, you may do so here: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/12/09/2019-26521/us-citizenship-and-immigration-services-fee-schedule-and-changes-to-certain-other-immigration#addresses

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is extending the comment period for its November 14, 2019, notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM or ``proposed rule'') regarding the USCIS Fee Schedule and Changes to Certain Other Immigration Benefit Request Requirements. DHS is also announcing the...

Today is National Wear Your Pearls Day. This holiday was founded by DeAnna Bookert in 2016, whose pearls became a symbol...
12/15/2019

Today is National Wear Your Pearls Day. This holiday was founded by DeAnna Bookert in 2016, whose pearls became a symbol of her purpose and value as she battled depression. We know the holidays can be a difficult time for some, but we hope that you wear your pearls proudly, and remember you are valued. Today's picture is an unknown Douglas County resident and her beautiful pearls. #NationalWearYourPearlsDay

Big thank you to everyone who came out for Murder at The Ugly Sweater Party tonight! You were all beautiful, clever, and...
12/15/2019

Big thank you to everyone who came out for Murder at The Ugly Sweater Party tonight! You were all beautiful, clever, and fantastic actors and actresses!

12/13/2019

Have you spotted Rudolph on 3rd Ave in Alexandria? His red nose is subtle, but if you turn up the sound, you may get a hint.

12/13/2019

Canadian Pacific Holiday Train passing the Douglas County Historical Society!

Today is the National Day of the Horse, encouraging people of the United States to appreciate the contributions of the h...
12/13/2019

Today is the National Day of the Horse, encouraging people of the United States to appreciate the contributions of the horse to the economy, history, and character of the United States. Think of everything you require an engine for today - horses were those engines yesterday! #DayofTheHorse

Congratulations to Jingle Bells Foundation! Thank you to all of your talented performers, organizers, and volunteers! 85...
12/11/2019

Congratulations to Jingle Bells Foundation! Thank you to all of your talented performers, organizers, and volunteers! 85k is an amazing number and your community is so thankful! 70 years of giving is an amazing legacy of kindness and generosity - and we can't wait to see what the next 70 bring.

The Bake Sale is going strong! Come on in!
12/06/2019

The Bake Sale is going strong! Come on in!

Our Annual Bake Sale is TOMORROW! Set your alarms! Doors open at 10! Those with mobility concerns please use basement en...
12/05/2019

Our Annual Bake Sale is TOMORROW! Set your alarms! Doors open at 10! Those with mobility concerns please use basement entrance, all others use front door please. We can't wait to see you!

Help the Douglas County Historical Society!Today ONLY! Facebook is 100% matching donations to non-profits. When you dona...
12/03/2019

Help the Douglas County Historical Society!
Today ONLY! Facebook is 100% matching donations to non-profits. When you donate $30, Facebook matches and also donates $30!

AS A BONUS, WE WILL HONOR YOUR DONATION AMOUNT AT OUR BAKE SALE THIS FRIDAY! Bring proof of donation, such as a receipt email, to get your donation amount as credit at our Bake Sale!

Facebook can only match so many donations until their match funds run out, so donate now!

Another beautiful gingerbread was dropped off by the Runestone Museum Foundation this morning! Look at the cozy Gingerbr...
12/02/2019

Another beautiful gingerbread was dropped off by the Runestone Museum Foundation this morning! Look at the cozy Gingerbread Rune-Home with its own mini Runestone (which are available at the Runestone Museum!)

Remember you can drop off your own candy covered creations until December 4th!

December 1st! That means Santa is officially coming to town!
12/01/2019

December 1st! That means Santa is officially coming to town!

The Saturday after Thanksgiving is Small Business Saturday! Douglas County is fortunate to have many local, small busine...
11/30/2019

The Saturday after Thanksgiving is Small Business Saturday! Douglas County is fortunate to have many local, small businesses. Which one (past or present) is your favorite? (Pictured are Iverson Shoes and the Brandon Feed Store & Hatchery)

11/29/2019
Walkin' in My Winter Underwear

"Valkin' in my vinter undervear" to our DCHS MN ethnic bakesale, Friday, Dec. 6, 2019, 10 am to 2 pm. See you there! Douglas County Historical Society MN, 1219 Nokomis St. S., Alexandria, MN. The song was by Alexandria's Jimmy Jenson, and it's a classic!

A clip from a retrospective of the Minnesota kids' show Lunch with Casey, circa 1970.

We still have pies left! $10 per pie! We have Pumpkin, Dutch, Apple, Blueberry, and Rhubarb! Homemade, fresh fruit, read...
11/26/2019

We still have pies left! $10 per pie! We have Pumpkin, Dutch, Apple, Blueberry, and Rhubarb! Homemade, fresh fruit, ready to bake - PERFECT FOR THANKSGIVING! Stop by and pick yours up today at 1219 Nokomis Street, Alexandria, MN.

11/25/2019

It was cold and windy! The individual light pole decorations are next. Love the reindeer heads!

Our first gingerbread houses are in! We have a Peppermint Cottage made by CeCe White, Age 3, and a Reindeer Barn made by...
11/25/2019

Our first gingerbread houses are in! We have a Peppermint Cottage made by CeCe White, Age 3, and a Reindeer Barn made by Aaliyah White, Age 5. Don't forget you can drop your own gingerbread houses off during business hours from now until Dec 4! Adults, Kids, Groups - all welcome, as long as it fits in a 10" cube! (And apologies, but yes, we are closed Thanksgiving and Black Friday.)

Early 1920's, Lester Nelson and his mother Rose O'Brien Nelson pose in front of the original Washington School and the c...
11/25/2019

Early 1920's, Lester Nelson and his mother Rose O'Brien Nelson pose in front of the original Washington School and the corner of Jefferson Street and 6th Ave. in Alexandria, Minnesota after a fresh snowfall.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS! Put it in your phones!
11/22/2019

MARK YOUR CALENDARS! Put it in your phones!

Did you know that today is National Gingerbread Day? And with our Gingerbread Contest kicking off this year, we are exci...
11/21/2019

Did you know that today is National Gingerbread Day? And with our Gingerbread Contest kicking off this year, we are excited to decorate with a Gingerbread theme! Remember you can drop off your entries any time during business hours!

We're on KXRA in about half an hour. Today's topic? Old cookbooks! (Just in time for all these holiday meals!) Click the...
11/21/2019
KXRA22

We're on KXRA in about half an hour. Today's topic? Old cookbooks! (Just in time for all these holiday meals!) Click the link to listen live via your browser or tune in to 1490 am or 100.3 fm! And if you've got a great old family recipe to share, let us know!

https://radio.securenetsystems.net/cwa/index.cfm?stationCallSign=KXRA22

Listen to our station on your computer or mobile device!

11/20/2019
Tom Hanks discovers he's related to Mister Rogers days before "A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood" released

Further evidence that you never know what your genealogy will reveal! The Douglas County Historical Society has great genealogy resources and researchers to help you uncover your past - who knows, maybe you're also related to the wonderful Mr. Rogers!

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/tom-hanks-mister-rogers-movie-actor-discovers-related-to-mister-rogers-days-before-a-beautiful-day-in-the-neighborhood/

Hanks is sixth cousins with Rogers, and they share the same great-great-great-great-great grandfather

Address

1219 Nokomis St
Alexandria, MN
56308

Opening Hours

Monday 08:30 - 16:00
Tuesday 08:30 - 16:00
Wednesday 08:30 - 16:00
Thursday 08:30 - 16:00
Friday 08:30 - 16:00

Telephone

(320) 762-0382

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