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Minnesota Local History News

Published: November 5, 2008

A weekly publication by the Minnesota Historical Society for professional local historians and historical organizations.

Come visit your place in history.

Discussions and Questions

Plan for Tomorrow (2 new messages) There are lots of resources available to help organizations plan. What are some others that you have used?

Free Cast Iron Stove (1 new message) Linda Ballantyne seeks information on a cast iron stove.

History Museums as a Gathering Place (3 new messages) Rental income from gatherings in a museum can help the bottom line, but the real bottom line is exposing your services to people that might not otherwise come.

AVAILABLE: TRACES Museum of History and Culture will close permanently on November 11, 2008. Most of TRACES Midwest/WWII-history collection and related props will be available to appropriate institutions upon closure. Details at 651-292-8700.

WANTED: 5 boxes with dimensions: 23wx26hx9d to hang on walls and all acrylic.  Contact Amber Lakey, Dakota County Community Corrections, 651-438-8289.

Job Announcements

New Museum Director at Ironworld

Ironworld Discovery Center announced Donald Westfall as museum director. Westfall previously led the Lindbergh State Historic Site and the Northfield Historical Society.

New Director in Austin

Mower County Historical Society welcomes Dustin B. Heckman as its executive director.

Local Events

AMM St. Paul conference kick-off

Join Minnesota Association of Museums on November 19, 2008 at the Science Museum of Minnesota to kick off planning for the 2009 joint conference with the Association of Midwest Museums in Saint Paul! RSVP to Lin Nelson-Mayson.

Book signings in Washington County

Robert Goodman, author of "A History of Washington County: Gateway to Minnesota History," will sign copies of his book Friday November 7, 2008, 4-6 p.m. and Saturday November 8, 2008, 1-3 p.m. at the Stillwater Cub Foods Store, located at 1801 Market Drive.

Elections history in Duluth

Join St. Louis County Historical Society on Thursday November 13, 2008, 12-1 p.m. for a presentation titled "The 2008 Election in Historical Perspective" by Craig Grau, Associate Professor Emeritus of Political Science.

Last tour of TRACES

At noon on Thursday November 6, 2008, Michael Luick-Thrams will offer the public a narrated guided tour of the TRACES museum. This is the final week that TRACES, the Twin Cities' only World War II museum, will be open.

Gingerbread house program

Learn how to create your own Gingerbread House at the Scott County Historical Society on Tuesday November 25, 2008, 6:30-8 p.m.

Tea and Highway 61

Enjoy a 3-course tea with Cathy Wurzer on Sunday December 7, 2008, 1 or 3 p.m., at the LeDuc Historic Estate.  Cathy will introduce her new book, "Tales of the Road: Highway 61," and guests will have an opportunity to purchase a signed copy of her book at a 20% discount. 

Cass Gilbert lecture

Katherine Solomonson will speak to the Cass Gilbert Society on November 11, 2008, at 7 p.m. at the University Club-Summit Avenue Clubhouse on "Cass Gilbert: Re-Imaging the Western Landscape."

November Sampler

Join Minnesota Association of Museums for a behind the scenes look at the magic in creating exhibit environments at VEE Corporation, designers of Sesame Street Live and more, on Wednesday November 12, 2008, 3-5 p.m. RSVP to Amber Stevenson, 651-225-6053.


2008 Minnesota Barns of the Year

Friends of Minnesota Barns announced its first annual winners of its Barn of the Year program.

Internet Resources

Census Atlas

United States Census Bureau published the first comprehensive population atlas since 1920.

Grant Deadlines

State Grants-in-Aid

Minnesota State Grants-in-Aid program assists nonprofits and local units of government with history projects that have long term benefits to the public. Deadlines are January 9, 2009 for pre-applications, and February 20, 2009 for final applications. Contact Melinda Hutchinson, 651-259-3459.

Conservation Assessment Program

Conservation Assessment Program provides small to mid-sized museums with a general conservation assessment of its collection, environmental conditions, and facilities. Deadline is December 1, 2008.

Partners Internship Program

Partners Internship Program provides internship grants to nonprofit agencies in Minnesota, North Dakota and northwestern Wisconsin. Application deadline is December 8, 2008.

Minnesota Tourism grants

Guidelines for 2009 Organizational Partnership Grants from Explore Minnesota are now available. The program assists communities in attracting travelers to Minnesota. Grant requests will be accepted for projects occurring January 1 - December 31, 2009.

Connecting to Collections Bookshelf

Institute for Museums and Library Services announced that an additional 1,000 sets of books on basic collections care and management will be given away. Apply between January 5 and March 9, 2009.

Upcoming Conferences and Workshops

Form 990 Workshops

Minnesota Council on Nonprofits will provide 990s Do Matter at the following venues: St. Paul (December 2, 2008), Duluth (December 16, 2008), Mankato (January 15, 2009), St. Cloud (January 20, 2009), Bismarck (January 27, 2009), and Minneapolis (February 4, 2009).

Call for proposals

American Association for State and Local History seeks session and workshop proposals for its 2009 conference, "Making History a 21st-Century Enterprise," August 26-29, 2009 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Proposals due November 17, 2008.

Field Note

As mentioned on the blog in August, township records can be vulnerable to many kinds of threats. One of those threats is arson, as happened to the Lake Mary Town Hall in 2003. Fortunately records there were not destroyed. How might you work with local keepers of public records to further preserve these resources?

White clapboard sided building with three windows and evidence of fire in a rear corner.