January 2020 Events, Programs & Exhibits

For immediate release

Release dated: 
November 13, 2019
Media contacts: 

Lauren Peck, 651-259-3137, lauren.peck@mnhs.org
Jessica Kohen, 651-259-3148, jessica.kohen@mnhs.org

January 2020 Events, Programs & Exhibits

Thursday, January 2, 2020

First Thursday Films: "Love Them First: Lessons from Lucy Laney Elementary" Film Screening
North Community High School
1500 James Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411
Each month from September through March, watch a different thought-provoking film and engage in community discussion afterward around topics in history that resonate today. In January, explore the story of one year, one principal, and one heartbreaking setback as a struggling Minneapolis elementary school fights to get off “the list" of underperforming schools. An extraordinarily powerful Northside story featuring Principal Mauri Melander Friestleben, her staff, and the students at Lucy Laney Elementary. This screening is a part of Black Cinema: Under the Skin, a program of films exploring Black culture and experience. Topical and relevant in these turbulent times, Black Cinema aims to create a space for dialogue and better understanding. This film series is a partnership between the Minnesota Historical Society, the Film Society of Minneapolis St. Paul, and the Capri Theater. This program is made possible by the Legacy Amendment's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on Nov. 4, 2008.
Thu., Jan 2, 2020, 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
$5
Get Tickets Online

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Candlelight Snowshoe & Hike
Charles Lindbergh House and Museum
1620 Lindbergh Dr. S. Little Falls, MN 56345
Spend an evening exploring the trails by candlelight in this annual hike, connecting the Charles Lindbergh House and Museum and the Charles A. Weyerhaeuser Memorial Museum. Guests can drop in at any time during the event and hike whatever distance is comfortable. Snowshoes are welcome if conditions allow. Both museums will be open with free admission for guests to warm up and grab refreshments. This program is weather-dependent. This program is co-sponsored by Charles A. Weyerhaeuser Memorial Museum and the Friends of the Lindbergh Heritage.
Sat., Jan 4, 2020, 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Free with donation

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Washburn A Mill Tour
Mill City Museum
704 S. 2nd St. Minneapolis, MN 55407
Take an in-depth look at the historic Washburn A Mill complex and the award-winning Mill City Museum building. A guide will take visitors into the building's many nooks and crannies, highlighting the lives of the men and women who worked there, how the building functioned during its peak flour milling years, and the many changes to the building over time. This is the only opportunity for a guided tour through the entire museum building and the only chance to see some of its nonpublic spaces.
Tour highlights include:

  • The dramatic story of the 1878 Washburn A Mill explosion, and the other dangers that mill workers faced on a daily basis
  • "The Octopus," a large machine that directed wheat into nine storage bins
  • The Humphrey Manlift, a vertical conveyor belt that carried workers from floor to floor
  • The Rail Corridor where hundreds of boxcars arrived each day to unload wheat and carry away flour
  • Millstone plaza, originally paved with retired millstones and the location for lunchtime concerts by the Washburn-Crosby employee band in the 1920s
  • Evidence of the three major fires that have damaged the building in 1878, 1928, and 1991
  • The East Engine House, once home to a two-story steam engine, has been remodeled into two classrooms, while preserving the original railroad car pulling machinery

The tour includes no more than 1 mile of moderately paced walking on uneven surfaces. Please call ahead to make arrangements for guests with limited mobility.
Jan 5, 19, & 25 2020, 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
$18/MNHS member save 20%, includes museum admission
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Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Music History Trivia
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55102
Join host Ryan Cameron of Let It Be Records and special guests from the Twin Cities music scene for Music History Trivia. Music nerds and novices looking for a challenge can team up for rounds of trivia with clues that include audio, photo, and video clips. Trivia nights will be held once a month in January, February, and March. Each night the top three teams will win prizes, such as tickets to First Avenue shows. Returning teams can compete for a grand prize.

  • Tuesday, January 7
  • Tuesday, February 11
  • Tuesday, March 10

Beer, wine, and food will be available for purchase at Market House by D'Amico. Support for this program is provided by the Marney and Conley Brooks Fund. This program is offered in conjunction with the exhibit First Avenue: Stories Of Minnesota's Mainroom.
Tue., Jan 7, 2020, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Free

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

"Art From the Edge of the Boreal Forest: Reflecting Biodiversity" Exhibit Opening
James J. Hill House
240 Summit Ave. St. Paul, MN 55102
The centuries-old tradition of botanical art blends scientific observation with artistic rendering. For the past 10 years, a group of traditionally trained botanical artists has explored the effects of a warming climate on the iconic boreal forest in northern Minnesota. Working with climatologists, naturalists, and other specialists, they identified 10 Minnesota trees that are most vulnerable to climate change: balsam poplar, balsam fir, black spruce, white spruce, jack pine, red pine, paper birch, quaking aspen, black ash, and tamarack. This exhibit highlights specific aspects of these 10 trees in works by Vicki Barth, Wendy Brockman, Marj Davis, Kathy Franzen, Nancy Gehrig, Debra Greenblatt, Julie Martinez, Mary Anne O'Malley, Kathleen Reeves, and Bruce Wilson. Also on exhibit are items by woodturner Bob Carls, who crafts vessels from wood harvested from these trees.
This exhibit is on view through June 21, 2020.
Wed., Jan 8, 2020, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Free gallery-only admission or included with $6-10 site admission/MNHS members free

Friday, January 10, 2020

Ramsey After Dark: Victorian Superstitions
Alexander Ramsey House
265 S. Exchange St. St. Paul, MN 55102
Superstitions were a part of Victorian society, from wedding cakes and dating customs to death and mourning rituals. Explore the mysterious world of Victorian superstitions in this theme tour. Hear excerpts from Ramsey family letters and journals and play Victorian fortune-telling games. Discover how and why superstitions captivated Victorian society. This program is intended for ages 18 and up.
Jan 10 & 24, 2020, 7:00 pm - 8:15 pm and 8:30 – 9:45 pm
$12 adults, $11 seniors and college students, MNHS members save 20%
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Master of Illusion Live Performance
James J. Hill House
240 Summit Ave. St. Paul, MN 55102
London, December 1920: It had never been done before; a small-time magician stood on the stage of St. George's Hall in front of a handful of influential booking agents. The magician, P. T. Selbit, carefully tied an assistant into a pine box, methodically sectioned the box with sheets of glass and steel, and paused. Then he picked up a saw and tore through the center of the box, sawing the woman in half and ensuring his fame in the process. For two nights only, the James J. Hill House will present, live, the ultimate of illusions: the Selbit Sawing with artist and performer Michael Callahan.
This program starts at 7, 8, and 9 pm and is suitable for age 18 and up.
Jan 10-11, 2020, 7:00 – 8:00 pm, 8:00 – 9:00 pm, 9:00 – 10:00 pm
$20 adults, $18 seniors and college students, MNHS members save 20%
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Saturday, January 11, 2020

Dakota & Ojibwe Winter Sky Family Day
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55102
When the days are short, we have an opportunity to spend more time exploring and enjoying the night sky. Join educators from the Native Skywatchers program to learn more about Dakota and Ojibwe star maps and constellation guides. View a large Dakota star map in the exhibit Our Home: Native Minnesota, and then learn how to find those constellations in the night sky. Plus enjoy art activities, large-format images from MNHS Press children's book The Forever Sky, and fun for the whole family. 
Sat., Jan 11, 2020, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Included with $6-12 museum admission/MNHS members free

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Pillsbury A Mill Tour
A-Mill Artists Lofts
315 Main St. SE Minneapolis, MN 55414
The Pillsbury A Mill, constructed in 1881, was once the largest and most advanced flour mill in the world. Go on a guided tour of the former milling complex, including the rooftop deck and the basement waterpower facilities, and discover the story of this National Historic Landmark, now home to the A-Mill Artist Lofts. Highlights include the largest and best-preserved waterpower system in Minneapolis, with views straight down a 50-foot drop shaft through a glass floor. Guests will discover how the building functioned during the flour milling era, see the architectural highlights of the recently completed A-Mill Artist Lofts built within the historic mill buildings, and learn about the new hydroelectric plant that helps power the complex. This tour is presented in partnership with A-Mill Artist Lofts. The tour includes about 1.5 miles of moderately paced walking indoors and outdoors with some uneven surfaces. Please call ahead to make arrangements for guests with limited mobility.
Sun., Jan 12, 2020, 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
$18/MNHS members save 20%
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Tuesday, January 14, 2020

World War II Round Table: Evolution of the Russian Army
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55102
Dr. Bruce Menning, author of the upcoming book Russian Army and First World War and Bayonets Before Bullets, will discuss the turmoil of WWI as it led into WWII. Starting at 6 pm before the program, students can participate in informal conversations with the author and veterans on the program topic. The Harold C. Deutsch World War II History Round Table brings together authors, historians, and WWII veterans to discuss the history of the conflict and to share the stories of those who lived through it. 
Tue., Jan 14, 2020, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Free

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Winter Fun Day
Historic Forestville
21899 County Road 118 Preston, MN 55965
Head to Historic Forestville for a day of winter fun. Build a snowman, play old-fashioned winter games, and go on a sleigh ride. Warm up by the outdoor fire pit while roasting s'mores and sipping hot chocolate, and stop in the visitor center for unique gifts.
Sat., Jan 18, 2020, 11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Free, sleigh rides $5

Capitol Art & Artists Tour
Minnesota State Capitol
75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55155
Go on a guided tour of the Capitol to hear stories about the artists, learn about the muralist movement in America, and see how the art, architecture, and overall decorative plan harmonize to make the Capitol one of the premier public buildings in the United States. See the grand murals, sculptures, and lavish decorations and learn about the elaborate conservation work recently performed to bring the art back to its original appearance. Visit legislative chambers, the Governor's Reception Room, Rathskeller Cafe, and exhibit space on the third floor. View works by artists Kenyon Cox, Edwin Blashfield, John LaFarge, Elmer Garnsey, Howard Pyle, and others.
Sat., Jan 18, 2020, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm & 1:00 – 2:30 pm
$10 adults, $9 seniors and college students, $8 ages 5-17, MNHS member save 20%
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Winter Frolic
Snake River Fur Post
12551 Voyageur Lane Pine City, MN 55063
Shake off the winter blues by heading outdoors at the fur post. Learn about winter travel during the fur trade and join in activities like throwing a curling stone, playing a round of Ojibwe snow snake, or snowshoeing along two miles of trails. Guests can also relax indoors, enjoy a cup of cocoa before a blazing fire and learn a historic game or two.
Sat., Jan 18, 2020, Noon - 4:00 pm
$10 adults, $8 seniors, $6 ages 5-17, MNHS members save 20%
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VocalEssence Together We Sing Festival
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55102
“Come together … right now” and sing as we honor the musical legacy of Minnesota and the rich tapestry of voices who call it home. Enjoy a performance by future stars from the radically diverse youth choir, VocalEssence Singers Of This Age, and give back through a service project to support healthy black pregnancies and families.

  • 1-1:30 pm: Check-In
  • 1:30-2 pm: VocalEssence Singers Of This Age Performance
  • 2-5 pm: Artist Workshops

On MLK weekend, join VocalEssence for its fourth annual Together We Sing Festival and raise your voice and give back. Participating artists include: VocalEssence Singers of This Age and VocalEssence Teaching Artists.  This program is made possible by the Legacy Amendment's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on Nov. 4, 2008.
Sat., Jan 18, 2020, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Free
Get Tickets Online

Monday, January 20, 2020

MLK Jr. Community Day
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55102
Celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. with a day of music, rhythm, and service at the Minnesota History Center. The VocalEssence youth choir will draw on songs from their vast catalog and youth drummers from ARTS-Us will share rhythms from across the African diaspora. Families can also drop in to assemble roadside kindness kits as part of a service project with Small Sums, a nonprofit that supports people experiencing homelessness.
Mon., Jan 20, 2020, 11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Included with $6-12 site admission/MNHS members free

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Winter Adventure Family Day
Forest History Center
2609 County Road 76 Grand Rapids, MN 55744
Make the most of winter at the Forest History Center by heading outdoors to snowshoe, ride bullet sleds, take a horse-drawn sleigh ride, or launch snowballs with a giant slingshot. Plus, enjoy indoor wildlife presentations with live animals, music, games, and much more.
Sat., Jan 25, 2020, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Included with $6-10 site admission/MNHS members free

Winter on the Hill
James J. Hill House
240 Summit Ave. St. Paul, MN 55102
Celebrate winter in Minnesota with tours, displays, and more focused on this season in the North Star State. Every half hour, house tours will focus on the Hill family's involvement with the St. Paul Winter Carnival and how they and other St. Paul residents survived, and even celebrated, Minnesota's most famous season. Plus, see special displays of St. Paul Winter Carnival memorabilia, Great Northern Railway Winter Carnival uniforms, snowshoes, a luxurious wolverine carriage blanket, and more. Guests can also put together old-fashioned jigsaw puzzles and play games made from household items.
Jan 25-26, 2020, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Included with $6-10 site admission/MNHS members free

History Forum: American Populism’s Rise, Fall, & Legacy with Kevin Gaines
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55102
Find out how the history of American populism—which first arose in the 19th century to take on the power of corporations and banks, and wrestle with racial conflicts in the South—offers a rich context for understanding contemporary struggles over democracy and voting rights in the United States. Kevin Gaines, Julian Bond Professor of Civil Rights and Social Justice at the University of Virginia, will present on these issues. Kevin Gaines is a Distinguished Lecturer for the Organization of American Historians. The History Forum series unpacks the history behind today’s headlines. Join six national scholars of American history as they explore the history that helps us understand and unravel the issues we face right now. Attend, engage, and draw your own conclusions.
Sat., Jan 25, 2020, 10:00 am - 11:00 am, 2:00 – 3:00 pm
$16/MNHS members save 20%
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Tuesday, January 28, 2020

History Lounge: Frederick Douglass in MN, 1867
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55102
Join historian Wayne Gannaway to learn about Frederick Douglass's visit to Winona in 1867. In 1867, Douglass, worried that Americans were already resisting the moral lessons the Civil War had taught us about race, equality, and freedom. So he launched a nationwide speaking tour that brought him to Winona. Local reactions to Douglass's visit played out in the pages of the Democratic and Republican newspapers in Winona, revealing the deeply held assumptions that white Minnesotans were making about African Americans, which were already beginning to shape the future of race and politics in the North Star State. Gannaway is the executive director of the History Center of Olmsted County in Rochester.
Tue., Jan 28, 2020, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Free

Ongoing Exhibits

Minnesota History Center
345 Kellogg Blvd. W., St. Paul

Closes May 3, 2020 

First Avenue: Stories of Minnesota's Mainroom
Since 1970, the club now known as First Avenue and 7th Street Entry has been at the heart of the Minnesota music scene. The First Avenue exhibit takes you inside the sights, sounds, and stories of this landmark venue that put Minnesota music on the map. Meet the musicians, the staff, and the regulars—and look back at how the scene has evolved over five decades. The exhibit draws from the MNHS Press book "First Avenue: Minnesota's Mainroom” by Chris Riemenschneider. Find out more.
This exhibit is made possible in part by our presenting sponsor, Baird. Media sponsorship provided by Star Tribune and The Current.

Closes May 3, 2020 Prince: Before the Rain
Minnesota photographer Allen Beaulieu helped shape the icon we know today as Prince. As Prince’s personal photographer and friend from the late 1970s into the early 1980s, he worked closely with the artist, helping to transform Prince from rising star to super stardom. Through it all, Beaulieu had access to the musician that few photographers have had, before or since.
Based on the new MNHS Press photography book, Prince: Before the Rain by Allen Beaulieu, visitors to this exhibit can view 50 digital prints, including the album covers of Dirty Mind, Controversy, and 1999, promotional photos of Prince and The Revolution, Morris Day and The Time, and other artists, as well as rare behind-the-scenes candids. 
Ongoing Our Home: Native Minnesota
Learn about Native communities in Minnesota, including stories of survival, resiliency, and adaptation.Native Americans—Dakota, Ojibwe, as well as people from other tribal nations—have dwelled in this area for thousands of years and still live in here today. This exhibit shares their stories, enduring presence, and deep connection to the land.
View historic and contemporary photographs, maps, and artifacts — and learn how Native people have retained cultural practices, teachings and values, and an essential connection to home.
“Our Home: Native Minnesota” is made possible in part by the Legacy Amendment through the vote of Minnesotans on Nov. 4, 2008.
Major support is also being provided by the Patrick and Aimee Butler Family Foundation, the George Family Foundation, the Rosemary and David Good Family Foundation, the Hardenbergh Foundation, and Lucy Rosenberry Jones and James Johnson with additional support from the Fred C. and Katherine B. Andersen Foundation, Thomas J. Arneson, the Athwin Foundation, The Kendeda Fund, Alta Marie Oben, and the Carl and Verna Schmidt Foundation.

Ongoing

Then Now Wow
Designed primarily for children, visitors of all ages will enjoy exploring Minnesota’s distinctive places from the prairies and forests to the cities. Along the way, they'll meet the people who have made their homes here. Step inside a prairie sod house; board a Twin Cities streetcar; don a headlamp to venture underground in an Iron Range mine; hitch a ride on a boxcar; sit in a modern tipi; and encounter artifacts and images unique to Minnesota’s diverse people and historic events.
“Then Now Wow” is made possible by the Legacy Amendment's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on Nov. 4, 2008. Find out more.

Ongoing

Minnesota’s Greatest Generation: The Depression, The War, The Boom
Explore interactive displays and innovative multimedia experiences that reveal the lives and stories of the men and women who came of age during the Depression and World War II and went on to create the postwar “boom.” The exhibition relies substantially on first-person narratives drawn from oral history interviews, published memoirs, reminiscences and letters. Find out more.

Ongoing

Weather Permitting
Minnesotans learn to cope with extreme temperatures, watch for signs of storms and generally enjoy the outdoors, whether boating on a summer’s day, skiing down a hill or snowmobiling across snowdrifts. Visit the multimedia tornado exhibit, “Get to the Basement,” named the best museum exhibit in the Twin Cities by City Pages. Find out more.

James J. Hill House
240 Summit Ave., St. Paul

Opens Jan. 8, 2020

Art From the Edge of the Boreal Forest: Reflecting Biodiversity
The centuries-old tradition of botanical art blends scientific observation with artistic rendering. For the past 10 years, a group of traditionally trained botanical artists has explored the effects of a warming climate on the iconic boreal forest in northern Minnesota.
Working with climatologists, naturalists, and other specialists, they identified 10 Minnesota trees that are most vulnerable to climate change and depicted them through botanical art: balsam poplar, balsam fir, black spruce, white spruce, jack pine, red pine, paper birch, quaking aspen, black ash, and tamarack. 
This exhibit is on view through June 21, 2020.

Mill City Museum
704 S. 2nd St., Minneapolis 

Closes March 29, 2020

My Mighty Journey: A Waterfall's Story
Explore artwork by internationally acclaimed artist Gaylord Schanilec that tells the story of the only major waterfall on the Mississippi River (known as Owanmniyomni in Dakota and St. Anthony Falls in English) and the changes it has witnessed over 12,000 years. 
Making prints with materials collected along the riverbank, Schanilec creates works of art that show the progression of the waterfall over thousand of years from present-day St. Paul to its current location, 15 miles upriver in downtown Minneapolis.
The exhibit features images of Schanilec's artwork from the new MNHS Press book "My Mighty Journey: A Waterfall's Story" by author John Coy.

Mille Lacs Indian Museum and Trading Post
43411 Oodena Dr., Onamia 

Closes Oct. 31, 2020

One Hundred Years of Healing: The Ojibwe Jingle Dress Dance Tradition
The global influenza epidemic that killed millions of people worldwide in 1918-19, including thousands of North American Indians and Alaska Natives, was the tragic inspiration behind a revolutionary new tradition of healing that emerged in Ojibwe communities of the United States and Canada, the jingle dress dance. Through photographs, oral tradition, and a display of jingle dresses from the MNHS collections, visitors will learn about the jingle dress dance and how its origin can be traced to the Mille Lacs Ojibwe.
The exhibit commemorates the epidemic and the 100th anniversary of the jingle dress dance. It is being developed in partnership with the University of Minnesota Department of American Studies and the Mille Lacs Ojibwe community.