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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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The New Nicollet Hotel

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | January 3, 2020

Still trying to embrace the new year and remember to write 2020 on things!
This postcard shows the lobby of The New Nicollet Hotel in Minneapolis, 1928. Pretty fancy!

S. S. Resolute

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | January 2, 2020

It's a new year, and so thoughts turn to resolutions. 
This is the closest related thing to be found in our postcard collection: a postcard of the S.S. Resolute on Lake of the Woods in 1960.

Happy New Year's Day!

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | January 1, 2020

This New Year's card was illustrated and signed by Vernon V. Green. The illustration shows Father Time, holding an hourglass and scythe and dressed in a robe marked "1936," turning away from Baby New Year, who sits on a throne and wears a crown marked "1937."

Happy New Year's Eve!

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | December 31, 2019

Balloons! It must be a party!
This photograph shows revelers on the Prom Ballroom dance floor on New Year's Eve, St. Paul, 1964.

Happy Hanukkah!

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | December 30, 2019

This photo shows Rabbi Harry S. Margolis lighting the last candle of Hanukkah at Mount Zion Temple, St. Paul, 1943.

Skating!

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | December 27, 2019

This photo from 1925 shows Oak Hall students skating in Saint Paul. 
Hope you get to enjoy some outdoor winter activities too!

Happy Kwanzaa!

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | December 26, 2019

Today is the first day of Kwanzaa, a festival observed by many African Americans to celebrate their cultural heritage and traditional values.
This cloth doll was made by Phyllis Chatham of Minneapolis using mainly African fabrics. She holds a sign that reads "KWANZAA" which is suspended from the arms with ribbon.

Merry Christmas!

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | December 25, 2019

Merry Christmas to all!
This single-sided Christmas card has an illustration of a cat wearing a bell and an Elizabethan-style ruff. The text "Wishing you a Merry Christmas" is printed above the cat's head; below it is the anonymous Christmas verse, "Hang sorrow! Care will kill a cat / And therefore let's be merry," lifted in part from dialogue used in Ben Jonson's 1598 play "Every Man in His Humour" (Act I, Scene III). The cat's ruff is probably a reference to these Elizabethan origins. 
The card is from 1878.

Waiting

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | December 24, 2019

This photo shows children waiting for Santa Claus in front of stocking-hung chimney on Christmas Eve, 1940.

Ornament

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | December 23, 2019

This blown glass Christmas ornament is decorated with crinkled and bent tinsel wire, circa 1870-1920.

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