• 1940s Living room
    40's Living Room

Preserving Our County History

The wait is over! We are open to the public as of July 7th. Our hours will be from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Coffee and Conversation is again held every Wednesday, however this year we are hosting two sessions- at 10 am and 2 pm. We are limiting attendance at each session to 12 people so we ask that you call 218-784-6204 by Tuesday to reserve a spot at either session. If you don’t feel comfortable attending in person or just can’t make a session, we will be Live Streaming on Facebook at 2 pm every Wednesday.

Because of COVID-19 we are following recommended guidelines for reopening of museums. We ask visitors to wear masks and groups of 10 or more must call ahead for an appointment. For now, we also asked you to call ahead if you are interested in using our genealogy resources. We may be doing things a little differently than in the past, but we are looking forward to seeing you.

What Have We Been Doing?

While we weren’t able to open the end of May as typical, our volunteers have been working hard, behind closed doors, doing such things as cataloging hats, unpacking and packing boxes of clothing, labeling, scanning, and designing new displays for the time when we could open.

NCHS needs your help!

We are running out of archival boxes in which to pack our historical clothing items. So far are we have packed over 800 pieces of clothing in 110 archival boxes! We still have a ways to go to preserve our beautiful clothing that dates back to the late 1800s. Each item is a piece of Norman Counties history. Due to COVID-19, our fundraising sources have dried up and we are asking our supporters to help us purchase enough archival storage boxes to protect these fragile items for years to come. Each box costs between $40-$60. If you can help support this project, send your donation to PO Box 201, Ada, MN 56510.

Activities To Do While Social Distancing!

Norman County Barn Quilt Trail

Whether you’re a resident of Norman County or a visitor, we encourage you to take a tour of the many businesses and residents in Norman County who display Barn Quilts on their property. A Trail Address Guide is available to locate these unique and very special Barn Quilts. More information and some of the quilts can be seen under the “Barn Quilts” tab at the top of the page.

Coffee & Conversation

Our popular Coffee and Conversation event is held every Wednesday during the summer with two sessions- at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., we are asking for people to call 784-6904 the day prior to make a reservation as we are limiting attendance to 12 people per session. These are fun events that give participants the opportunity to socialize safely with other people while learning about the history of Norman County. Reserve your spot and give us a try!

Prairie Village Exhibits

Visit the new and expanded exhibits in the museum. Take a self-guided tour of the other buildings at Prairie Village.

Back to the ’70s

Although the summer of 2020 activities which include Class Reunions have been canceled, the Museum will still display artifacts from the classes who graduated during the ’70s.

Country Schools of Norman County

This exhibit is in year 2 of a 2-year cycle of displays. Norman County at one time had over 100 country schools. This year country schools are featured, along with a display of what the typical school looked like in the early 1900s. See actual photos of many of the old-time schools and interesting artifacts are available to view.

Norman County Fair-125 Years Old

Come see the extensive display honoring the 125th birthday of the fair in Norman County. View the display of fair artifacts and take a trip down memory lane as you see some of the contributions of 4-H and FFA in making the fair a must attend event each year.

World War II75 Years Ago

The World War I exhibit has been retired and we designed a new exhibit for World War II which started 75 years ago. Please stop in to see this exhibit that honors the men and women of Norman County who served and supported our country during those trying times.

The 1940s

Come view the additions to the 1940s living and dining room. View colorful glassware, and other objects familiar to those who grew up during the 40s or who remember the items from their grandparent’s homes. This exhibit is a permanent feature of the museum but we change and update items regularly

Hats from Bygone Days

The Boys and their Toys exhibit has been replaced by a fabulous display of hats. This winter our volunteer project was to examine, photograph, catalog, and repack the hundreds of old hats in our collection. When the hats were unpacked we were amazed at the number of gorgeous hats and of course, we decided we had to display a number of the most interesting ones. The problem was-so many to chose from!

Fur Trade in Northwest Minnesota

While fur trading didn’t play a big part in the settling of Norman County, it did impact the very early years of this area. The Norman County Historical Society is pleased to be a part of a traveling exhibit featuring fur trading in northwest Minnesota. This traveling exhibit changes every three months and features a new aspect of the fur trade era with each change. Come back to see each one.