Winona County Historical Society

Winona County Historical Society The Winona County Historical Society operates The Winona County History Center in downtown Winona, MN; The Bunnell House in Homer; and The Rural Heritage Museum in St.
(19)

Charles. We also offer a wide range of activities! Learn more at winonahistory.org

Operating as usual

#museummonday Check out the new exhibits at the History Center this fall. Here is the line-up!
09/28/2020

#museummonday Check out the new exhibits at the History Center this fall. Here is the line-up!

Voices From the Past Cemetery WalkSponsor a Character:New this year, to help us recuperate lost field trip funds (over $...
09/26/2020
WCHS Voices From the Past Cemetery Walk

Voices From the Past Cemetery Walk
Sponsor a Character:
New this year, to help us recuperate lost field trip funds (over $1800 annually) and offer a free Virtual Voices From the Past Field Trip to area schools, we are asking the public to Sponsor a Character for $50. You can do so online, or by calling or stoping by the History Center. 507.454.2723 ext. 0. http://www.winonahistory.org/voicesfromthepast.html

What are they doing to the Armory? Thanks to the Elizabeth Callender King Foundation and Carl and Verna Schmidt Foundati...
09/25/2020

What are they doing to the Armory? Thanks to the Elizabeth Callender King Foundation and Carl and Verna Schmidt Foundation, along with a few generous donations from some members, a metal moisture guard is being put atop the brick work of the Armory parapet and battlements. This will protect the masonry from our Minnesota climate for decades to come and will blend with the brick. The battlements were restored 8 years ago, replacing the cement cap put on the Armory around the 1930s, probably due to the same moisture issues.

#ThrowbackThursday College of Saint Teresa Tennis players, Winona 1930-1939.
09/24/2020

#ThrowbackThursday College of Saint Teresa Tennis players, Winona 1930-1939.

Remember to get your bid in for some awesome bread for an awesome organization! https://themotherloaf.com/order.html
09/23/2020
Order - The Mother Loaf

Remember to get your bid in for some awesome bread for an awesome organization! https://themotherloaf.com/order.html

Fundraiser for the Winona County History Center. Purple Sweet Potato and Carrot Sourdough. Ordering is live! Only 8 loaves will be made and bidding is enabled. The top 8 bidders will get a loaf.Pickup is Sunday from 2-4 unless otherwise arranged. I may have some loaves ready Saturday.DETAILS:Request...

#TuesdayTrivia The armory which is now part of the Winona County History Center was built in 1915. What was in that loca...
09/22/2020

#TuesdayTrivia The armory which is now part of the Winona County History Center was built in 1915. What was in that location prior to its construction?

We teamed up with #visitwinona to offer some more great Winona gear! Some favorite items from the temporarily closed Win...
09/22/2020

We teamed up with #visitwinona to offer some more great Winona gear! Some favorite items from the temporarily closed Winona Visitor Center are now found at the Museum Shop at the Winona County History Center! Sales benefit these two great local organizations and local artists. Check out this fun apparel and more 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday - Saturday. #winonamn

We are excited to announce Carrie Johnson will be WCHS Executive Director starting Nov. 1. Read more about Carrie on our...
09/21/2020
News

We are excited to announce Carrie Johnson will be WCHS Executive Director starting Nov. 1. Read more about Carrie on our website: http://www.winonahistory.org/news.html

Executive Director is Announced: Carrie Johnson The Winona County Historical Society is pleased to welcome Carrie Johnson to the Executive Director position starting November 1. Carrie is originally...

Winona Wagon Works – The Winona Wagon Works established its factory on six acres at 1009 West Fifth Street in Winona aft...
09/19/2020

Winona Wagon Works – The Winona Wagon Works established its factory on six acres at 1009 West Fifth Street in Winona after moving from Rushford to Winona following a fire in 1879.

#TBT President Franklin Roosevelt at St. Teresa Campus. FDR made a visit to Winona August 8, 1934. He arrived via highwa...
09/17/2020

#TBT President Franklin Roosevelt at St. Teresa Campus. FDR made a visit to Winona August 8, 1934. He arrived via highway 61 by motorcade with a parade downtown to
board his special train at the Chicago & Northwestern depot.

Mary Farrell Joins the WCHS Team!Mary is originally from Hoyt Lakes, a small town in northern Minnesota on the Iron Rang...
09/16/2020

Mary Farrell Joins the WCHS Team!
Mary is originally from Hoyt Lakes, a small town in northern Minnesota on the Iron Range. She attended Winona State University and has been working for Visit Winona for the past 12 years as the Visitor Services Coordinator and is now also the Visitor Services Coordinator for WCHS, managing the tickets and information desk at the History Center.

Her interests include Photography, film making, outdoor activities, and building relationships with friends and community members. Mary is very involved with the community and is a board member of the Friends of the Winona Public Library and Catholic Charities of Southern MN. She also volunteers with the Winona Catholic Worker, Big Brothers Big Sisters and the Winona Community Warming Center.

We would like to thank Catherine Schmidt for all the work she's done here the past year. Catherine was Visitor Services Coordinator for the past year and left to be with her daughter during this uncertain school-year due to COVID-19 and care for her Dad. We will be looking forward to her visits!

#TuesdayTrivia What was a common item furniture makers  often made other than furniture? (Image: Hillyer Furniture Wagon...
09/16/2020

#TuesdayTrivia What was a common item furniture makers often made other than furniture? (Image: Hillyer Furniture Wagon on exhibit at the History Center, learn more when we post the answer next Tuesday!)

Did you ever wonder how Lewiston got its name? Check out Walt's article from the current issue of The Argus to find out.
09/14/2020

Did you ever wonder how Lewiston got its name? Check out Walt's article from the current issue of The Argus to find out.

Winona County Historical Society's cover photo
09/10/2020

Winona County Historical Society's cover photo

We're raising dough with The Mother Loaf! In the spirit of fall, Teri Tenseth Market of The Mother Loaf will be handmaki...
09/10/2020

We're raising dough with The Mother Loaf! In the spirit of fall, Teri Tenseth Market of The Mother Loaf will be handmaking and baking purple sweet potato and carrot sourdough loaves in exchange for a monetary donation to the Winona County Historical Society. What a sweet deal!

The highest donations will get a loaf of this homemade goodness! Bidding will close the end of the day, Tuesday, September 22nd. Make your bid for a WCHS loaf at https://form.jotform.com/202517932700146 and learn more at https://www.themotherloaf.com/order

Winona County Historical Society's cover photo
09/08/2020

Winona County Historical Society's cover photo

Have a nice and safe labor Day weekend everyone!
09/05/2020

Have a nice and safe labor Day weekend everyone!

#TBT Check out this 1906 Motion Picture Projector from our collection.
09/03/2020

#TBT Check out this 1906 Motion Picture Projector from our collection.

From the latest issue of our newsletter, The Argus...
09/02/2020

From the latest issue of our newsletter, The Argus...

#TuesdayTrivia Which President delivered a speech from the Winona Opera House in September of 1909?
09/01/2020

#TuesdayTrivia Which President delivered a speech from the Winona Opera House in September of 1909?

#winonawomen Dorothy Haner...The traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Women Voters Minnesota open...
08/28/2020

#winonawomen Dorothy Haner...
The traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Women Voters Minnesota opens today. This week are featuring a few Winona County women who were leaders of their time.

#winonawomen Jeanette Lamberton...This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League ...
08/27/2020

#winonawomen Jeanette Lamberton...
This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Women Voters Minnesota. This week we are featuring a few Winona County women who were leaders of their time.

#winonawomen Mabel Marvin...This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Wom...
08/26/2020

#winonawomen Mabel Marvin...
This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Women Voters Minnesota. This week we are featuring a few Winona County women who were leaders of their time.

#winonawomen Emma Shelton...This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Wom...
08/25/2020

#winonawomen Emma Shelton...
This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Women Voters Minnesota. This week we are featuring a few Winona County women who were leaders of their time.

Thank you to all who participated in The Great Winona County History Hunt these past two weeks and to our sponsor Lewist...
08/25/2020

Thank you to all who participated in The Great Winona County History Hunt these past two weeks and to our sponsor Lewiston Auto! This event had 237 participants raising $2370 for WCHS! Winona mayor, Mark Peterson, did the honors this morning and drew the big winner of the $500 grand prize. Drummmm roll...and the winner is Amanda Shields of Winona. Congratulations Amanda!

#museummonday #winonamn #winonawomen Jane Ely... This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Enga...
08/24/2020

#museummonday #winonamn #winonawomen Jane Ely...
This Friday we will open the traveling exhibit, A Century of Civic Engagement: League of Women Voters Minnesota. This week will be be featuring a few Winona County women who were leaders of their time.

Center Street in 1861 Winona with Sugar Loaf, also called Wapasha's Cap, before quarrying, in the background.
08/23/2020

Center Street in 1861 Winona with Sugar Loaf, also called Wapasha's Cap, before quarrying, in the background.

#TBT View of Sugar Loaf from West Burns Valley shows Glenn Flour Mill and pond.
08/20/2020

#TBT View of Sugar Loaf from West Burns Valley shows Glenn Flour Mill and pond.

The Bergs have the bike area and alley looking great again after weeds and saplings took over for awhile. Thank you! Vol...
08/20/2020

The Bergs have the bike area and alley looking great again after weeds and saplings took over for awhile. Thank you! Volunteers are awesome!

#winonacounty #acrossthecounty Altura General Store, 1940. Altura is a small town in the northwestern part of Winona Cou...
08/20/2020

#winonacounty #acrossthecounty Altura General Store, 1940. Altura is a small town in the northwestern part of Winona County. Settlers started farming in the area in the 1850s and Altura was founded in 1906 and soon had a school, 5 stores, a creamery, a bank, a hotel, and two blacksmith shops. It was named for a town in Spain.

Just a few days left to see Wildflowers of the Midwest! This beautiful exhibit of watercolors by Lydia E. Curtis is at t...
08/19/2020

Just a few days left to see Wildflowers of the Midwest! This beautiful exhibit of watercolors by Lydia E. Curtis is at the History Center through Saturday (we are closed Sundays at this time).

Address

160 Johnson St
Winona, MN
55987

Alerts

Be the first to know and let us send you an email when Winona County Historical Society posts news and promotions. Your email address will not be used for any other purpose, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Contact The Museum

Send a message to Winona County Historical Society:

Videos

Category

About WCHS

The Winona County Historical Society is a private non-profit educational institution, and our mission is to be dedicated to the collection, preservation, exhibition and interpretation of materials that document the history of Winona County, Minnesota. The Society currently has over 1400 members and 60 active business supporters. The Society operates three museums. The Winona County History Center in downtown Winona houses the main museum facility, Laird Lucas Library and Archives, Society offices and program and event spaces. The Bunnell House is located in Homer and the Rural Heritage Museum is on the Winona County Fairgrounds in St. Charles.

The Winona County Historical Society was founded in June 1935 at a meeting of interested citizens in the Winona County Courthouse. The first president was William Codman, a local attorney and amateur historian. The first secretary was Mildred Sebo, a local 4-H leader in the county. The year before, Mildred organized a Winona County historical pageant in Whitewater State Park that was very successful, and it was from that event the idea of starting the Society emerged.

The Society had its first headquarters in the courthouse and later acquired space in the Arlington Club and at Phelps Hall at Winona State University. During and after WWII the Society was relatively inactive. In 1954, a group of Winona citizens sought to revitalize the Society and approached Dr. Lewis I. Younger, a local physician and well known collector. Dr. Younger eagerly took on the responsibility, and under his leadership over the next 21 years, he helped make the Society one of the most active and well-respected county organizations in the state. During his tenure the Society’s offices and collection were moved into the second floor of the Lumberman’s building across from the Winona Public Library. The Society’s current home in the former National Guard Armory building (1915) was purchased and given to the Society by the Laird-Norton Co. in 1971 and dedicated in 1973. In 2009 construction started on the 12,000 sq. ft. modern Laird Norton Addition, designed by award winning architect Joan Soranno of the firm Hammel, Green and Abrahamson. With a historic $1.5 million challenge grant from the Laird Norton Company and donations from over 1000 individuals, businesses, local governments and foundations the $4.5 million project was a great success and was dedicated July 18, 2010 to celebrate the Society’s 75th anniversary.

The Armory part of the Winona County History Center was restored the summer of 2012. Thanks to a Minnesota Cultural Heritage Grant from Minnesota’s Legacy Funds and the Elizabeth Callendar King foundation the 1915 Armory was reenforced, tuck-pointed, and its battlements and turrets are back! In 2017 WCHS opened the Rural Heritage Museum on the County Fairgrounds that includes a museum building, historic schoolhouse, log house and log barn. The Bunnell House has had various restoration projects since the Society acquired it in 1954. It stands the test of time and is a continued testament to the first Euro-American settlers that stayed in what would become Winona County.

Nearby museums


Other History Museums in Winona

Show All