Collections Up Close

collections up close Blog

Collecting pieces of Minnesota's past for the future


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.

See Collections Up Close Blog Archive

All MNHS Blogs

Subscribe by e-mail:

 Subscribe in a reader

Flower King

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 15, 2019

This print by Gary Egger from 1980 is titled "Flower King."

It was created from the Dayton's Bluff Print of the Month Club and is based on a historical photograph.

In the Month of May

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 14, 2019

This chapbook was printed by Red Ozier Press of New York in 1985. It is one of 140 handmade copies of Robert Bly's work "In the Month of May." 
This is its opening stanza:

"In the month of May when all leaves open,
I see when I walk how well all things
lean on each other, how the bees work,
the fish make their living the first day.
Monarchs fly high; then I understand
I love you with what in me is unfinished."




By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 13, 2019

On this date in 1956 Elvis Presley performed at the Minneapolis Auditorium for a crowd of 3,000.

This photograph from the St. Paul Dispatch-Pioneer Press shows him signing autographs during that visit.

Happy Mother's Day

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 10, 2019

Happy Mother's Day this weekend to all the important women in our lives!
And what better way to celebrate than with plants!
This photo of an elementary school plant sale for Mother's Day is from 1935.

Minnehaha Falls

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 9, 2019

This majestic image of Minnehaha Falls was taken between 1910 - 1925. It forms part of Edward D. Mayo photograph collection. 
Don't miss the little figure on the left hand side!

Sun Fetcher

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 8, 2019

I feel like this is a book we all may need a bit of today.

It's "Sun Fetcher," a book of poetry by Minneapolis poet Michael Dennis Browne. It was published in 1978 and is in the MNHS Library collection.

Prince's Purple Rain Costume

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 3, 2019

Prince's iconic ensemble from "Purple Rain," which was largely filmed in First Avenue, will be on display in the exhibit. 
The First Avenue exhibit opens on Saturday, May 4!

First Avenue Exterior

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 2, 2019

This photo of the exterior of First Avenue was taken by Daniel Corrigan, circa 1990. It celebrates First Ave. as an "International Music Landmark."
The First Avenue exhibit open this Saturday, May 4!

First Avenue Concert Ticket

By: Lori Williamson | Item of the Day | May 1, 2019

This is an admission ticket for a Trip Shakespeare concert at First Avenue in Minneapolis, 1989.
The First Avenue Exhibit opens this Saturday, May 4!

Sam's Danceteria concert calender poster

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

So excited about the First Avenue exhibit opening next Friday, May 4! Can't Hardly Wait!
This Sam's Danceteria calendar is for November 1981. The club was renamed "First Avenue" on December 31, 1981.