Item of the Day

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Collecting pieces of Minnesota's past for the future

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The Minnesota Historical Society preserves and makes available a wide range of materials chronicling Minnesota's history and culture. The goals of the Collections Department are to collect and preserve; provide access and interpretation; and engage in education and outreach. This blog is a tool to share these stories and let people know what is happening in the department.

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Item of the Day

State Park Permit, 1961

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | August 3, 2018

This is the state park annual permit that goes in the front windshield of one's car to allow access to Minnesota's extensive park system for the year 1961. We have a complete run of these in the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) files, which are part of our State Archives collection. Please note the year cleverly placed on the bag.

The girl in the glass

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | August 2, 2018

This photo from an art/dance class was taken at the University of Minnesota in 1946. The photographer was Gordon Ray, and it forms part of the Reid H. Ray Film Industries Collection.

See it in Collections Online.

PLATO, not the philosoper

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | August 1, 2018

PLATO computer terminal made by Control Data Corporation, 1980. This was a "dumb" terminal, capable only of doing tasks that were in disk--no networking. Monitor has a touch screen, controls below the screen, and sits on round base that is adjustable.

See it in Collections Online.

Houseboat "DeSoto" at Raspberry Island, St. Paul, 1903

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | July 27, 2018

This photo is of a houseboat on the Mississippi River at Raspberry Island in 1903.

See it in Collections Online.

July, July

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | July 26, 2018

This book by Minnesota author Tim O'Brien was released in 2002. He also is the author of The Things They Carried about soldiers in Vietnam.

A Map of Louisiana and of the River Mississippi, 1721

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | July 25, 2018

This map of Louisiana and the Mississippi was created by John Senex in 1721. 

See it in Collections Online.

Evening dress, 1905

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | July 24, 2018

This evening dress is made of silk chiffon over white satin with sequined black Chantilly lace. Made by dressmaker, Mrs. George F. Hall, Chicago, Illinois, ca. 1905.

See it in Collections Online.

Man with white owl, 1920

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | July 23, 2018

This is a photograph of a man with an owl from 1920. It appears to be on a leash; the dog does not look impressed.

See it in Collections Online.

Milk carton kayak used in Minneapolis Aquatennial, 1971

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | July 20, 2018

Happy Minneapolis Aquatennial!
This kayak was constructed out of waxed paper milk cartons over wooden frame with masonite supports. Brands of milk cartons used include Land-O-Lakes, Target, Polka-Dot Dairy, Inc., Dairy Fresh Brand, Purity-Ohleen, Franklin and Farmdale; large advertisement stickers adhered to top are for sponsors including radio stations KDWB 63, and WDGY and Dairy Queen. It moved using a hand crank connected to the paddle wheel, and was used in the 1971 Minneapolis Aquatennial. 
It is over 11 feet long, so much bigger than it appears in this photograph. 

See it in Collections Online.

Milk carton kayak used in Minneapolis Aquatennial, 1971

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | July 20, 2018

Happy Minneapolis Aquatennial!

This kayak was constructed out of waxed paper milk cartons over wooden frame with masonite supports. Brands of milk cartons used include Land-O-Lakes, Target, Polka-Dot Dairy, Inc., Dairy Fresh Brand, Purity-Ohleen, Franklin and Farmdale; large advertisement stickers adhered to top are for sponsors including radio stations KDWB 63, and WDGY and Dairy Queen. It moved using a hand crank connected to the paddle wheel, and was used in the 1971 Minneapolis Aquatennial. It is over 11 feet long, so much bigger than it appears in this photograph.

See it in Collections Online.

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