This page contains contains a list of all the content on H-Midwest having to do with the state of Minnesota.
I was so intrigued by this post that I visitede this orphanage museum last week. I had dug around in some archives of orphanages out in Philadelphia a couple years ago, read up on some of their history, and on some of the academic work on orphanages in the late 1800’s and first half of the 1900’s. But while I grew up in Minnesota and moved back to the state from Philly three years ago, I had somehow never heard of the Minnesota Public School State Orphanage Museum! I thank Anne Peterson for taking the time to show me around.
It goes without saying that people bring us interesting things as artifact donations. As often as possible, we try and get the story that goes with the interesting artifacts, in order to make them even more interesting. Sometimes, though, the full story of an object is not known to anyone still living, and the most that we can get is tantalizing hints.
The doll pictured here falls into the latter category.
[Editor's note: Today's Museum of Minnesota entry comes from Wendy Biorn, Executive Director of the Carver County Historic Society. It will be the first in a series of posts centered around the Society's preservation of an historic barn on the Andrew Petersen Farmstead. Wendy's posts will come every six weeks or so.]
There were so many of these children across the Midwest! Wisconsin had a similar state school, and thousands of children passed through it in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Thanks for your great work, Anne Peterson, and your great blog. Here at the East Side Freedom Library in Saint Paul, MN, we are inspired by your work.
When Minnesota passed the law creating the Minnesota State Public School for Dependent and Neglected Children in 1885, it was created to be transitional housing for children placed in its care by county courts. Even then, they realized that the best place for a child was in a family setting. Children were sent to the State School to get healthy, get educated, to get good moral training, and then, ideally, to be adopted or placed on a family farm. However, adoption rates were low and children were often placed out under an indenture contract.
As a Minnesotan, I just had to share this book review from our friends at H-Skand. I've always enjoyed the strength of feeling aroused in Minnesotans by the Kensington Rune Stone and the story of Vikings settling in Minnesota. The feelings have always been strong, but divided: some still believe it, many do not, but both sides have always seemed surprisingly passionate. I remember meeting people who were taught about the Kensington Rune Stone in their history classes.