Willie Murphy, c. 1990

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

Willie Murphy, c. 1990

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

We were saddened to learn of the recent passing of Willie Murphy, the musical legend of the West Bank.
This 1990 portrait of Murphy by Minnesota artist Greg Kelsey (1951-91) is a recent addition to our art collection. It was donated in his memory by Kelsey's widow Sally Johnson, Director of the Groveland Gallery in Minneapolis.