Dakota County Historical Society

Dakota County Historical Society Collecting, preserving, presenting and promoting the history of Dakota County, MN.
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The Dakota County Historical Society is an organization dedicated to serving county residents and visitors through unique programming and an ever-changing schedule of events. DCHS operates both the Lawshe Memorial Museum in South St .Paul and the LeDuc Historic Estate in Hastings. For more information on both sites or to find out more about upcoming events, please visit our website www.dakotahistory.org.

Mission: Preserve, interpret and promote the history of Dakota County.

The 81st Annual Meeting for the Dakota County Historical Society is Saturday, January 18, 2020 at the Hastings Golf Club...
01/10/2020
Jan 18 - DCHS Annual Meeting at Hastings Golf Club

The 81st Annual Meeting for the Dakota County Historical Society is Saturday, January 18, 2020 at the Hastings Golf Club & Events.

We will have a great lunch, followed by a short business meeting where we will recap the last year and explore what is to come in 2020.

Following this, we view the new TPT Documentary "Solid State," which prominently features Dakota County's contributions to the computer history.

Click below to register.

Dakota County Historical Society

You all have done it again!Thanks to all of our generous members and supporters, we have officially surpassed $10,000 fo...
01/02/2020

You all have done it again!

Thanks to all of our generous members and supporters, we have officially surpassed $10,000 for the 2019 Lawshe Fund!

We cannot thank each of you enough for the generosity you have shown our organization the past two months!

THANK YOU!

Time is almost up on the calendar year and for the 2019 Lawshe Fund!We are sitting at just over $9,500 raised since Nove...
12/31/2019

Time is almost up on the calendar year and for the 2019 Lawshe Fund!

We are sitting at just over $9,500 raised since November 6! If you are unsure on whether or not to donate, know that your contribution could put us over $10,000 for the campaign.

We enjoyed a holiday tour at the Sibley House and now we’re enjoying some tea and food.
12/20/2019

We enjoyed a holiday tour at the Sibley House and now we’re enjoying some tea and food.

We are all set up for the Holiday Tea today!
12/14/2019

We are all set up for the Holiday Tea today!

Don’t forget you can win a behind-the-scenes tour at any DCHS site by contributing to the Lawshe Fund!
12/13/2019

Don’t forget you can win a behind-the-scenes tour at any DCHS site by contributing to the Lawshe Fund!

It’s time to celebrate! We reached our (second) fundraising goal of $8,500 raised during the Lawshe Fund!Our original go...
12/11/2019

It’s time to celebrate! We reached our (second) fundraising goal of $8,500 raised during the Lawshe Fund!

Our original goal was $7,000, which was increased to $7,500. We ask you to help us shatter our goal by making it up to $8,500. We made it there within just a few weeks!!!

12/03/2019

Do you think we can raise $1,000 before the end of the year?

Our organization set a goal of raising $7,000 during this year's annual campaign and we currently stand at $7,500. Let's see if we can make it to $8,500!

Anyone that donates to our Annual Campaign will be entered into a random drawing. One winner will be selected to take a behind-the-scenes tour of any DCHS site they choose! The tour will allow up to 5 people to go on the tour. All previous donations received will be included.

To donate, visit (www.dakotahistory.org/donate-now).

Please help share this post and see if we can get to $8,500!

We are well into #GivingTuesday and hope that you will consider giving to DCHS.Our organization reached more than 1,000,...
12/03/2019
Donate Now

We are well into #GivingTuesday and hope that you will consider giving to DCHS.

Our organization reached more than 1,000,000 people from all across the country in 2019. Your donations and contributions allow us to achieve this level of success.

In 2020, we have a full calendar of events, plenty of tours to offer and will be once again taking Dakota County's history across borders into other communities throughout Minnesota.

Thank you for your support and allowing us to do these amazing things!

You’ve heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but what about #GivingTuesday? Tomorrow you can join people all over the ...
12/02/2019

You’ve heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but what about #GivingTuesday? Tomorrow you can join people all over the country and give back to your favorite nonprofits.

You can give to #DCHS at (dakotahistory.org/donate-now) and help us continue shattering our fundraising goal!

We’re at $7,400+ raised since November 6, 2019.

11/27/2019

Due to the weather today, all DCHS sites will be closed.

How would you like to help us shatter something? Don't worry, it's not an artifact!Our end of the year fundraising campa...
11/25/2019

How would you like to help us shatter something? Don't worry, it's not an artifact!

Our end of the year fundraising campaign set a goal of $7,000. This goal has been reached and we still have more than a month left.

Our request is that you all help us shatter our fundraising goal for the 2019 Lawshe Fund Campaign! To help, please visit (www.dakotahistory.org/donate-now) and make a contribution toward our efforts. In the notes, please put "Lawshe Fund" so we can accurately track it.

You can also mail a check with a note in the memo line for "Lawshe Fund" to:

Dakota County Historical Society
130 3rd Avenue N
South St. Paul, MN 55075

DCHS staff had the privilege to visit students at St. John the Baptist Catholic School today in Vermillion. The students...
11/22/2019

DCHS staff had the privilege to visit students at St. John the Baptist Catholic School today in Vermillion. The students are studying the branches of government, so they talked about some well known politicians from Dakota County.

Mr. Matt Carter, from the Dakota County Historical Society, stopped by our second grade today! Mr. Carter and the second graders talked about historical politicians from Dakota County, including Alexander Ramsey, Henry Sibley, Ignatius Donnelly, and Harold Stassen. The second graders have been learning about the branches of government, which went along perfectly with Mr. Carter’s talk. As part of DCHS, Mr. Carter stops in to visit with the second graders once a month. Thank you for your visit, Mr. Carter!

11/21/2019
Dakota County Government

Did you know that William LeDuc was Commissioner of Agriculture and played an important role in growing tea?

Click the link below to learn more about the connection between William and tea!

This Dakota County landmark once hosted a U.S. president! Learn more about its famous owner's history in this short video. Dakota County Historical Society

Thank you to everyone that contributed during our #GivetotheMaxDay19 campaign!Even though we were just shy of our goal o...
11/15/2019

Thank you to everyone that contributed during our #GivetotheMaxDay19 campaign!

Even though we were just shy of our goal of $1,000 ($5 shy to be exact), we will still celebrate!

Thank you again for your support toward this and our Lawshe Fund Campaign! We are on pace with the overall campaign to surpass last years total AND our goal of $7,000.

Each year we make an effort to get out into the community to present Dakota County’s history to those that can’t make it...
11/15/2019

Each year we make an effort to get out into the community to present Dakota County’s history to those that can’t make it to our sites, or that don’t know of our sites.

We present more than 30 public presentations annually and reach thousands of people, in addition to the 20,000+ that visit our sites.

The image is from a presentation to the Mayflower Society of Minnesota.

As part of our community outreach, we partner with organizations on various projects throughout the year.  One of those ...
11/15/2019

As part of our community outreach, we partner with organizations on various projects throughout the year. One of those is our annual vintage base ball games at Dakota City Heritage Village.

A big thank you to everyone who has donated to us during this year’s #gttmd19!We are about 3/4 of the way to our goal of...
11/14/2019

A big thank you to everyone who has donated to us during this year’s #gttmd19!

We are about 3/4 of the way to our goal of $1,000! Can you help push us over our fundraising goal?

Our third donor match during our campaign is a Presidential match by DCHS President, Robert Damon, and his wife Michelle...
11/14/2019

Our third donor match during our campaign is a Presidential match by DCHS President, Robert Damon, and his wife Michelle Damon. They are offering up to $1,500 total in matching funds to every dollar given.

In the picture, Bob can be seen on the right, portraying another President - Rutherford B. Hayes. Hayes visited Hastings in 1878! #gttmd19

We want to thank Steve Cook and his wife, Michele Fallon for providing our second match today: $1,000! Steve is a member...
11/14/2019

We want to thank Steve Cook and his wife, Michele Fallon for providing our second match today: $1,000!

Steve is a member of our Board of Trustees and Treasurer. He and Michele have provided great support to DCHS over the years and we are grateful for this match offer.

NOTE: This is not a picture of Steve or Michele, but we don’t have one! So instead, we chose a fun picture from our @mallofamerica event!

Each year we reach thousands of students, sharing Dakota County’s history. I’m addition to free admission for students a...
11/14/2019

Each year we reach thousands of students, sharing Dakota County’s history.

I’m addition to free admission for students at our sites, we visit schools and present to students. #GivetotheMaxDay2019

In 2019, we had more than 1,000,000 organizational impressions on the public. This means our name and Dakota County hist...
11/14/2019

In 2019, we had more than 1,000,000 organizational impressions on the public. This means our name and Dakota County history was seen through media, exhibits and programs.

This number does not include any social media presence, such as Facebook reach, or Twitter and Instagram.

Our largest reach was through the Mall of America event that had more than 700,000 organizational impressions alone!

The Friends of the Sibley Historic Site are matching all donations up to $500. The Friends of Sibley provide support to ...
11/14/2019
Friends of the Sibley Historic Site

The Friends of the Sibley Historic Site are matching all donations up to $500. The Friends of Sibley provide support to our organization through operations at the Sibley Site.

They provide financial support to allow all children on school tours enter free of charge. They also support programming, such as the Fete event and much more!

Learn about Henry Sibley Minnesota's first governor

Today is the day - please consider DCHS for your charitable contribution. This year we have three matches being offered ...
11/14/2019

Today is the day - please consider DCHS for your charitable contribution.

This year we have three matches being offered totaling $3,000 to help your donation go further.

Throughout the day we’ll share these matches and highlights of the past year so you know what your contribution helps us accomplish.

Today was a busy day at the #LawsheMemorialMuseum!  First we hosted the Minnesota Area Vintage Base Ball captain’s meeti...
11/09/2019

Today was a busy day at the #LawsheMemorialMuseum! First we hosted the Minnesota Area Vintage Base Ball captain’s meeting. We will announce this date later! Then we followed it with two showings of the documentary “They Shall Not Grow Old.”

Are you interested in supporting local history?We are accepting applications to join the Board of Trustees for the Dakot...
11/07/2019
Trustees

Are you interested in supporting local history?

We are accepting applications to join the Board of Trustees for the Dakota County Historical Society. Follow the link to learn more and to fill out an application of interest.

There is still time to apply for the Marketing & Membership Coordinator position - deadline is Friday, November 8th. Vis...
11/05/2019
Home

There is still time to apply for the Marketing & Membership Coordinator position - deadline is Friday, November 8th.

Visit our website and search "Marketing & Membership" for the direct link.

Thank you to everyone that joined us for our 80th Birthday Bash at the Southview Country Club.
11/03/2019

Thank you to everyone that joined us for our 80th Birthday Bash at the Southview Country Club.

Raffle tickets for the Kansas City, MO prize package are now available!Purchase your tickets at the Lawshe Memorial Muse...
10/25/2019

Raffle tickets for the Kansas City, MO prize package are now available!

Purchase your tickets at the Lawshe Memorial Museum (130 3rd Avenue N - South St. Paul, MN). Each ticket is $10!

Additional prizes may be added to the prize package.

We held our #SibleySiteHaunting on Saturday, October 19th. We had more than 90 people learn about the Sibley Art School ...
10/20/2019

We held our #SibleySiteHaunting on Saturday, October 19th. We had more than 90 people learn about the Sibley Art School in just 2 hours!

We are hiring for a Marketing & Membership Coordinator.If you are interested in learning more about the position and how...
10/17/2019
Home

We are hiring for a Marketing & Membership Coordinator.

If you are interested in learning more about the position and how to apply, visit our website (www.dakotahistory.org) and search "Employment," or scroll to the bottom of the page to find the link.

Dakota County Historical Society

10/09/2019

As we wrap up our celebration and commemoration of the 100th anniversary of WWI, we have an exciting announcement!

In the next couple of days, we will launch a raffle that will give you the chance to win a vacation package to Kansas City, MO!

The package includes an overnight stay, admission passes to the National WWI Museum & Memorial, certificates to local attractions and restaurants!

Here is some exciting news about a Heritage Partnership grant we received. We will partner with the Ramsey County and Sc...
09/15/2019
Historical society earns $89,000 grant; presentation slated Sept. 19

Here is some exciting news about a Heritage Partnership grant we received. We will partner with the Ramsey County and Scott County Historical Societies for this project.

Stop by the LeDuc Estate Thursday, September 19th to learn more about this project.

The Dakota County Historical Society recently received an $89,000 Heritage Partnership Grant from the Minnesota Historical Society. The partnership includes Dakota, Ramsey and Scott County historical societies and will allow

Yesterday we had the opportunity to join @ighparksrec on a tour of the Old City Hall and the Heritage Village Park. Here...
09/12/2019

Yesterday we had the opportunity to join @ighparksrec on a tour of the Old City Hall and the Heritage Village Park. Here’s a photo of the Old City Hall.

07/23/2019

Take a look at the locations we will be visiting by visiting our website for the bus tour itinerary!

The Sibley Site had a fantastic time at Fur Trade Weekend this year! The rain on Saturday didn't dampen staff spirits an...
07/23/2019

The Sibley Site had a fantastic time at Fur Trade Weekend this year! The rain on Saturday didn't dampen staff spirits and Sunday went off in beautiful weather. A big thank you to our presenters, staff, and volunteers for making this event so great! @ Sibley Historic Site

Don’t forget to stop by the Sibley Site for Fur Trade Weekend tomorrow. While you’re there, enjoy Chomped Grill Food Tru...
07/21/2019

Don’t forget to stop by the Sibley Site for Fur Trade Weekend tomorrow. While you’re there, enjoy Chomped Grill Food Truck from 12-3!

We are hiring for Site Supervisor at Sibley Historic Site!The application deadline is Monday, July 15th - so click the l...
07/01/2019
Employment

We are hiring for Site Supervisor at Sibley Historic Site!

The application deadline is Monday, July 15th - so click the link and apply today!

Dakota County Historical Society

Thank you to our new sponsor this year for vintage base ball, Great Southern Bank!
06/29/2019
Great Southern Bank — Banking Services, Mortgage and Auto Loans

Thank you to our new sponsor this year for vintage base ball, Great Southern Bank!

Great Southern’s mission is to build winning relationships with its customers, associates, shareholders and communities. On any given day, we are hard at work helping young families realize the dream of home ownership, helping a business owner expand his or her business, or providing the right pro...

In January 2019, we started our "World War I Adopt a Soldier Project." Many of the 80 researchers have submitted researc...
06/28/2019
World War One Biographies

In January 2019, we started our "World War I Adopt a Soldier Project."

Many of the 80 researchers have submitted research on various WWI men and women that served from Dakota County. Some volunteers and interns took that research and created biographies for the soldiers.

Here are a few of those biographies that we were able to get posted. We will continue to update the list as they come in.

Dakota County Historical Society

Check out this new exhibit tour at the Sibley Historic Site.
06/18/2019
Sibley Historic Site

Check out this new exhibit tour at the Sibley Historic Site.

On Saturday, June 22nd, we will open a special exhibit tour called “The Four Sarah Sibleys.” The Tour will take place every Saturday during the tour season at 12 (Noon) and last one hour.

The exhibit will explore the important women in Henry’s life named Sarah: his mother, sister, wife and daughter.

Admission to the tour is $6 per person, or $4 for members. More information can be found in the link, or at (www.dakotahistory.org/events).

The rain didn’t stop the Sibley Savants for their first day camp today. Kids ages 10-15 came and worked with an artist o...
06/11/2019

The rain didn’t stop the Sibley Savants for their first day camp today. Kids ages 10-15 came and worked with an artist on the basics of sketching, working from real life observations and still life scenes created in our own DuPuis House. It was a fantastic day made even better by its connection to the art school history of the Sibley House! @ Mendota, Minnesota

Address

130 3rd Ave N
South Saint Paul, MN
55075

Opening Hours

Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00
Thursday 09:00 - 20:00
Friday 09:00 - 17:00
Saturday 10:00 - 15:00

Telephone

(651) 552-7548

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Our Story

The Dakota County Historical Society’s mission is “to preserve, interpret and promote the history of Dakota County. As an organization dedicated to serving county residents and visitors, we offer unique programming, exhibits, and an ever-changing schedule of events. Founded in 1939, DCHS currently operates three historic sites. The Lawshe Memorial Museum in South St .Paul is the organization’s headquarters and houses the research library. In 2005, we began operating the LeDuc Historic Estate in Hastings in partnership with the

City of Hastings. A new partnership began with the Minnesota Historical Society in 2016, as we began operating the Sibley Historic Site. For more information on our sites, or to find out more about upcoming events, please visit our website www.dakotahistory.org.

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iking Battalion Hero Walk May 25 & 27 Minneapolis, Minn. Ft. Snelling to honor the 'Vikings', a MN-based WWII ski battalion. Come join the 99th Infantry Battalion Educational Foundation at Fort Snelling National Cemetery, 7601 34th Ave S, On Memorial Day weekend To place the flags on Saturday Morning at 8:30 a.m. Help them tell their the story of the fallen heroes on Saturday to the volunteers. On Monday, enjoy the ceremony at 10 a.m. and march in the Honor Walk behind the Colors. 76 soldiers have returned to Fort Snelling where they’re buried. There will be a ceremony for these Vikings, including the dedication of a new monument. The event begins at 8:30 a.m. on Mallon Drive. http://www.fox9.com/news/ft-snelling-to-honor-the-vikings-a-mn-based-wwii-ski-battalion
If you have an interest in Genealogy and vintage photographs or documents I'd like to invite you to join our groups "Family Treasures Found" and "Forgotten Faces, Forgotten Places" on facebook. "Our Mission is to rescue vintage photographs, letters, etc., from languishing on dusty shelves and long-forgotten boxes. Through research we strive to reconnect long-lost ancestral history to descendants AT NO CHARGE." The groups, have been formed to display "lost" Identified/Unidentified Photos & Documents so they may be returned to their descendants (or an appropriate historical society, library, etc). Our hope is that, as more people join the group, they will identify our unmarked photos by comparing them to existing photos which they may have in their possession.
What i really enjoy is the barn with its hundreds of farm tools from hand made wood rakes, plows, hammers, etc, etc. The music events and Christmas events are another favorite of mine. Really like that little one room cottage and small log church. https://gammelgardenmuseum.org/visit/ Meaning “old farm” in Swedish, the Gammelgården Museum is the only open air museum devoted to preserving, presenting and promoting Swedish immigrant heritage in the United States. In buildings that have been carefully preserved and restored, visitors can get a glimpse of the daily lives & artifacts of these immigrants and participate in events and classes. The main exhibit in the Välkommen Hus and the Butik gift shop are open daily May – December. Before Minnesota became a state dozens of Swedes travelled up St. Croix river and settled in the area and that’s why Gammelgården. Check out couple videos I made when i visited Gammelgården Swedish Fiddler Gathering, MN Swedish Museum Gammelgarden, Swedish Farm museum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=faMemtpHFiQ Brian Wicklund One of Minnesotas best fiddle musicians Gammelgarden Museum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yd0w-YJs9vg Couple music videos I made My Home Land Song for Scandinavian musicians https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qz_tXyTAZdw Emigrantens Farvel Til Norge 1800 Poem https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFBw5c7xU80
Click on image for larger more readable jpg of the image. Somehow I missed the booklet when it was published. Must not have been a member of a lag http://www.fellesraad.com/agder.htm at the time. The booklet sounds interesting, I’m going to library someday and read the publication. The Norwegian Statehood Pioneer Project was organized to recognize Minnesota's Norwegian Pioneers during its Sesquicentennial in 2008. http://www.mn-nspp.org The results of those activities were gathered into a "Heritage Book" that includes stories and biographies of the pioneers, and a recap of the Sesquicentennial Celebration held in Rochester on October 18, 2008. More than 500 events, over 150 grant projects, arts and culture exhibits, presentations, music and literature creations where funded. The Norwegian Statehood Pioneer project was just one the many that was funded. Minnesotans endeavored to tell all the stories that shaped this land, our culture, our people and our destiny — from before statehood to the present to the years beyond our own time. Also available on the website or even Amazon (the Sesquicentennial book) "Celebrating Our Norwegian-Minnesotan Heritage" If you want to read a government history of the Sesquicentennial and not the booklet https://www.leg.state.mn.us/docs/2009/mandated/090376.pdf
I found this article when researching history of post office and may be of interest in your family research. Chances are good that one of your relatives was a postmaster. Records of appointment of postmasters are among the many records of the Post Office Department in the custody of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). https://www.archives.gov Postmaster appointments have been micro filmed in two National Archives publications: M1131, Record of Appointment of Postmasters, October 1789– 1832 (4 rolls). The post offices are arranged alphabetically by post office name. M841, Record of Appointment of Postmaster, 1832–30 September 1971 (145 rolls). https://www.archives.gov/research/post-offices/postmasters-1832-1971.html The post offices are arranged alphabetically by state, then by county, then by blocks of years, and then alphabetically by post office name. Postmaster appointment records provide the name and date of appointment of each postmaster. The postmaster officially served until his successor took over, so also make note of the successor’s name and date of appointment. To look up kin folk start with this link below https://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=1932 Ancestry.com. U.S., Appointments of U. S. Postmasters, 1832-1971 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. This collection was indexed by Ancestry World Archives Project contributors. This collection of 181 volumes of post office appointments and vacancies stretches from 1832 until 1971. The records show the date of establishment and discontinuance of post offices, changes of names of post offices, and names and appointment dates for their postmasters. The database also includes dates of Presidential appointments of postmasters and their confirmation dates by the Senate. Starting in 1870, the records contain names of post offices where discontinued post office’s mail was sent. From 1832 until 1950, these records were kept by assistants to the Postmaster General. From 1950 to 1971, the Bureau of Post Office Operations compiled the records. Up to 1930, the records are arranged by location and then alphabetically by name of post office. After 1930, there are two types of records. They are arranged alphabetically by name of post office and alphabetically by the appointment’s name. The records include: Name Appointment date Vacancy cause Vacancy date Post office location State County Volume Help preserve historical records for generations to come. Join the Ancestry World Archives Project, a collaborative effort involving thousands of people around the world keying digital records to make them free for everyone. Anyone can join, and you decide how much time you’ll contribute - as little as 15 minutes helps.
Would anyone there know what might have happened to records from central school. I am looking for data on an event that happened on a summer school event where some of us were bused to Excelsior park and lake - with chaperones. I think around 1956. Thanks for any help and guidance you can give.