Volunteer & Intern Spotlight
Split Rock Lighthouse
Long time volunteer Shirley Tresselt, won our Fall 2012 Volunteer Recognition drawing for four tickets to the November 10 Beacon Lighting at Split Rock Lighthouse in Two Harbors, MN. The prize included lunch, a tour of the Split Rock Lighthouse and visitor center, a video about the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald, the lighting of the beacon and the ringing of the bell.
The lighting event is held every year to honor the 29 men who lost their lives in Lake Superior on November 10, 1975 during the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald freight liner. The beacon is lit at 5 p.m. The names of the 29 crew members are read aloud as the bell is rung.
This year the weather was cold, windy and wet; very similar to the weather that created 10 foot waves and a terrible gale the year the Edmund Fitzgerald went down.
Shirley said she and her friends had a great experience and wanted to thank the staff at the lighthouse for their warm hospitality. Congratulations Shirley!
Volunteers Spin it!
The Minnesota History Center has been offering museum visitors a free hands-on activity all summer that focuses on historic sites across Minnesota--Spin-Around-the-State Pinwheels. To streamline the pinwheel making process for our many visitors, volunteers were needed to cut and punch holes in straws, and use lots of hot glue to create individual pinwheel stems.
The Women's Organization of the Minnesota Historical Society rose to this whirlwind challenge by preparing over 3,000 stems. All this fine work was greatly appreciated during events at the Minnesota State Fair for Minnesota History Day!
Volunteers help students design their dreams
Earlier this year, two MHS Volunteers, Darlene and Dorothy assisted with an interesting “hands-on” project, Minnesota Design Diaries. This was an 8 week workshop for approximately 10 at-risk girls.
The group met Saturday mornings February through April at the Old Arizona Theater. They enjoyed instructions from a fashion designer, the opportunity to interview established designers about their careers and get mentoring on work, and a field trip to view the Minnesota History Center’s textile collection.
Volunteers assisted with introducing the girls to the sewing machine, the techniques in sewing and fabric selection.
Civil War Battle Flag Tour on June 12, 2012
Congratulations to the winners of the drawing for the Battle Flag tour!
On a beautiful summer evening, sixteen volunteers and guests of the Minnesota Historical Society learned about Civil War Battle Flags conservation. We first visited the History Center lab where Textile Conservator Ann Frisina showed us the work she is doing on the flags.
The Society’s 58 rare Civil War and Spanish-American War battle flags are some of Minnesota’s most significant military artifacts from one of the nation’s most traumatic conflicts. Each flag is documented, photographed, cleaned, stabilized and mounted onto a support panel, and then placed in secured, climate-controlled storage. This work will ensure that these artifacts will endure for generations.
Then, we strolled over to the State Capitol where Site Manager Brian Pease and Program Manager Linda Cameron gave us a tour of the Capitol and the flags currently on rotating display. We even made it to the top of the last 63 stairs--and we saw the golden horses! The gold-leafed copper and steel statuary group "Progress of the State" is also known as the Quadriga.
After the tour we gathered for light refreshments and conversation in the Capitol's Rathskellar. It was an informative and fun way to say "Thank you!" to Society volunteers.
Volunteer Program Annual Report FY 2011
More than 2,000 volunteers contributed to Society programs during the past fiscal year. Read the Volunteer Services Annual Report to learn more.