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.
This black silk top hat that belonged to Governor Floyd B. Olson (1931-36) was made by Dobbs 5th Ave. New York and sold by Malmstedt in Minneapolis. The governor's initials are inside the hat's crown. Circa 1930.
Upon his death in 1923, this mask of Knute Nelson was cast. Death masks were common among high profile figures in the 18th and early 19th centuries, and Nelson’s is one of many in the Minnesota Historical Society’s collection. The mask is made of plaster of Paris and painted dark brown.
This leather coat was owned by Alexander Ramsey who served as Minnesota's second governor from 1860 to 1863. Modeled on a European cloth frock coat, garments like these were popular among the Metis of the Red River Valley in the first half of the nineteenth century. The coat is elaborately decorated with quillwork embroidery and glass beads. Ramsey may have acquired the coat when he attended the 1851 Traverse des Sioux treaty signing.
New Year's card consists of faux woodgrain card stock. Front of card reads "Happy New Year" in red calligraphy. Cut out rectangular window contains a satin textile of pale green groundcloth and shows a woman with crossed legs sitting on a dock over a body of water, wearing a hat and a red top. Above her, branches with green foliage extend out over the water. Above one of the branches is an image of a red hut. Inside of card contains a thin sheet of folded paper with printed lettering that reads "Best Wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year" with eight Vietnamese characters surround the printed greeting. Dated December, 1967.
Letter size white paper handbill typeset with cartoon illustration of exploding "Champagne '82" bottle & glass, martini glass, balloons, choreography chart with footprints. "NEW YEARS EVE AT Goofys upper deck...dance until you can't dance no more! " E Productions, hand-lettered, Minneapolis, MN, 31 December 1981.
Do seasonal social gatherings and holiday dinner parties leave you feeling bloated and weighed down? Is your figure closer in resemblance to Santa’s than to Sarah Palin’s? Never fear, the solution is here! Heave those heaping hips, bust those bulging thighs and twist your way to a tighter tush with the 1968 Trim Twist Executive Exerciser! Constructed of sturdy, heavy pressed board and mounted on a metal turning mechanism, the Trim Twist will have you digging out those old Chubby Checker 45’s and Twisting the Day Away! Designed to fit snugly underneath the desk in your cubicle!