Minnesota Historical Society

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The Minnesota Historical Society is a dynamic and widely recognized educational organization that is a trusted resource for history. It is highly valued for its historical resources, educational impact, service, advocacy and leadership. The vision of the Society is to maximize the power of personal and community stories and shared history to enrich and transform lives.

Established in 1849, the Society collects, preserves and tells the story of Minnesota’s past through museum exhibits, libraries and collections, historic sites, educational programs and book publishing. Using the power of history to transform lives, the Society preserves our past, shares our state’s stories and connects people with history.


Using the Power of History to Transform Lives
Preserving - Sharing - Connecting


The Minnesota History Center is home to the Minnesota Historical Society’s vast collections of Minnesota artifacts. In an expansive underground storage areas, the Society protects a wealth of history in many forms—photos, letters, maps, books, state records, battle flags, paintings, Prince’s suit from Purple rain and so much more. The Society preserves its collections so future generations may learn from them. The Society also preserves its historic sites and works with history and heritage organizations on preservation projects.


The Society shares its rich resources, collections, and knowledge of history with the public through its sites, programs, exhibits, library, websites and publications. The Society encourages the public to share their knowledge, feedback, and experiences with the Society to improve its services for the community.


The Society invites the public to explore history through diverse exhibits and programs at the Minnesota History Center. Through its 26 historic sites and museums, the Society connect members and the public to history where it happened. The public can learn about the Dred Scott decision at Historic Fort Snelling; climb inside the Split Rock Lighthouse and see the lake through the eyes of the lighthouse keeper from the early 20th Century; and experience Minneapolis’ explosive flour milling history at Mill City Museum.