What's New

This month our list highlights two recent oral history projects that bring forth personal stories about immigration from East Africa to Minnesota. The central themes in these stories focus on African diasporas, community, family, perseverance, and resilience. Both collections contain interviews in native languages as well as English.

Somali Oral History Project

Somali Oral History ProjectThe Somalis in Minnesota Oral History Project began as a partnership between the Minnesota Historical Society and Macalester College. With the guidance of Professor Ahmed Samatar as well as the staff at the Somali Museum of Minnesota the project unfolded in stages from 2013 to 2016 and resulted in 58 interviews of various men and women of the Somali community including poets, scholars, politicians, educators, and others. Learn more about the participants and hear their experiences fleeing the violence and persecution of the Somali civil war, living in refugee camps, and adjusting to life in America. Audio and transcripts are available.

Oromo in Minnesota / Oromoo Minisootaa Keessa Oral History Project

Oromo Oral History ProjectFor the Oromo in Minnesota / Oromoo Minisootaa Keessa Oral History Project, native language interviews were a critical focus in response to the oppression in Ethiopia of both Afaan Oromoo language and those who speak it. With funding from the Minnesota Clean Water, Land, and Legacy Amendment, the project gives voice to the Oromo population which is so large in the state that Minnesota has been called "Little Oromia." Of the 12 interviews, eight are in Afaan Oromoo with transcripts available as English translations. Participants for the project are men and women, young and old, first and second generation immigrants, and others discussing the Oromo culture and language as well as their struggles in the Oromia region of Ethiopia and America. Audio and transcripts are available.


New and Updated Finding Aids - September 2017

Name/Abstract File No.
Blue Earth County, Minnesota: An Inventory of Telephone Directories at the Minnesota Historical Society lb00127
A collection of telephone directories for cities in Blue Earth County, Minnesota. Telephone directories are published by telephone companies and include alphabetical listings of residential and business phone numbers and street addresses in the white pages, and a listing of businesses arranged by subject in the yellow pages. Each entry on the inventory lists the city name, year of coverage, and the shelf number of the printed volume or microfiche set which includes that city.
Chippewa County: Independent School District No. 128, Milan: An Inventory of Its Records gr01362
Records documenting the administration of this Chippewa County school district. Included are attendance registers, audit reports, class of 1956: 25 year reunion records, clerk's books, Future Farmer's of America chapter annual reports, graded school registers, list of graduates from Milan High School, pupil records, school board minutes, school censuses, and treasurer's records.
Chippewa County: School District No. 11/282, Big Bend Township: An Inventory of Its Records gr01363
Includes clerk's books (1939-1965), treasurer's books (1946-1965), complete term register (1928-1938), pupil record (1933-1947), school census 1940-1959), and attendance registers (1948-1964).
Crippled Child Relief, Inc. (Minneapolis, Minn.): An Inventory of Its Records 01251
Minutes, newsletters, directories, and other administrative files, and a receipts and disbursements register of a Minneapolis-based non-profit organization that gave grants to individuals for assistive devices and loans and scholarships to individuals pursuing careers in physical and occupational therapy.
Ebony Fashion Fair Oral History Project: An Inventory of Its Oral Histories oh175
Oral history interviewsInterviews with 10 individuals directly involved in organizing and managing the Ebony Fashion Fair in the Twin Cities covering topics of logistics, leadership, venues, audiences, fashions, and fundraising as well as the impact on the African American community. Additionally discussed are personal family backgrounds, the civil rights movement, historically Black colleges and universities, Black fraternities and sororities, community involvement and advocacy, building careers in Minnesota, and involvement in local organizations that hosted the fashion fair, including the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., and Limited 30 Black Women's Network.

Includes digital content.
Lac qui Parle County: School District No. 44/867, Louisburg: An Inventory of Its Records gr01364
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district. Including accession book, attendance registers, classification registers, complete combination of school records and reports for ungraded elementary schools, clerk's books, school censuses, school detachment and dissolution files, teacher's annual reports to the county superintendent, and treasurer's books.
Lac qui Parle County: Independent School District No. 377, Madison: An Inventory of Its Records gr01365
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district. Including abstract of title, audit reports, established and existing policies, graduates of Madison High School, high school commencement programs, Madison School fire damage photographs, meeting minutes, and teacher's agreement.
Lake Adney Oral History Project: An Inventory of Its Oral Histories oh178
Oral history interviewsSeven interviews with men and women whose family stories at Lake Adney date back to the 1940s and continue into the present. Topics discussed include community life on the lake, purchasing property, building and renovating cabins, outdoor recreation, intergenerational experiences at the lake, race in northern Minnesota, reflections on cabin culture, as well as family and personal backgrounds.

Includes digital content.
Manuscript Biographies Collections: An Inventory of the Collection P939
An assortment of manuscript items or groups of related items whose value is largely biographical. They include biographical and autobiographical sketches and notes, wedding and baptismal certificates, appointments, letters, brief reminiscences, school records, clippings, memorial statements, and other personal memorabilia.

Includes digital content.
Beneta Mchie and Family: An Inventory of Their Papers 00057
Beneta Amelia EdwardsFamily papers, files, and photographs documenting the social activities and community involvement of Beneta (Edwards) Mchie, a Twin Cities African American woman involved in issues surrounding the education of women and minorities and social justice, and the activities of her husband John Mchie, Jr., and members of their extended family.
Northern Pacific Railway Company. Advertising and Publicity Department: An Inventory of Its Records 01011
NP Advertising and Publicity Correspondence, subject files, photograph files, timetables and miscellaneous advertising samples documenting the Northern Pacific administrative unit responsible for managing corporate advertising and public relations work.
Northern Pacific Railway Company. Land Department: An Inventory of Its Records 01020
NP Land Many series of records created by the Northern Pacific administrative unit responsible for the company's extensive land holdings, and documenting in great detail the acquisition, surveying and platting, ongoing management, resource usage, and disposition of the lands.
Oromo in Minnesota / Oromoo Minisootaa Keessa Oral History Project: An Inventory of Its Oral Histories oh177
Oral history interviewsTwelve interviews chronicle the history of Oromo immigrants in Minnesota, one of the largest Oromo populations outside of Ethiopia and the second largest East African ethnic group in the state. Interviewees include first and second generation immigrants; men and women; elders and young people; a scientist, a writer, a fashion designer, a healthcare professional, a political activist, and more. They broadly discuss their lives in Oromia and in Minnesota and provide detailed insights into Oromo culture and language, the oppression and struggle of the Oromo people in Ethiopia, the immigration process, resettlement in the United States, the Oromo community in Minnesota, cultural change and preservation in the diaspora, contemporary Oromo politics, and the future of Oromia and the Oromo people.

Includes digital content.
Somalis in Minnesota Oral History Project: An Inventory of Its Oral Histories oh176
Oral history interviewsFifty-eight interviews conducted with Somali residents of the Twin Cities and surrounding areas, as well as St. Cloud, Rochester, Mankato, and the Fargo-Moorhead area. Interviewees are community leaders, politicians, healthcare professionals, activists, educators, scholars, businesspeople, artists, and poets. Topics discussed include family backgrounds, childhood in Somalia, education both in Somalia and the United States, Somalia before the civil war, the outbreak of the Somali civil war in 1991, reactions to the war, fleeing the war, life in refugee camps, the immigration process, initial experiences in the United States, language, religion, cultural preservation, assimilation, careers, identity as Somalis and Minnesotans, political involvement, challenges and successes of the Somali community, and the future of Somalis in Minnesota.

Includes digital content.
Stevens County: Joint School District No. 100/2181 of Stevens, Big Stone, and Swift Counties: An Inventory of Its Records gr01366
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district, including attendance registers, accession book, clerk's books, files on building a new school, school censuses, teacher's annual and monthly reports, textbook records, and treasurer's records.
Swift County: Independent School District No. 784, Appleton: An Inventory of Its Records gr01367
Records documenting the administration of this Swift County school district. Included are attendance registers, audit reports, board minutes, clerk's annual reports, clerk's books, commencement and baccalaureate programs and files, graded school registers (attendance registers), records of grades, teacher's master sheets, and treasurer's annual reports.
Swift County: School District No. 8/2186, Edison Township: An Inventory of Its Records gr01368
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district. Including all complete record and report, all in one record, attendance registers, clerk's books, school censuses, teacher's reports to county superintendent, and treasurer's books.
Swift County. School District No. 12/2187, Shible Township: An Inventory of Its Records gr01369
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district. Including all in one record, attendance registers, classification registers/class record books, clerk's books, library record/accession books, map of school district, school censuses, school textbook record books, teacher's reports to county superintendent, and treasurer's books.
Swift County: School District No. 22/2194, Hegbert Township: An Inventory of Its Records gr01370
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district. Including all in one record, all complete record and report, attendance registers, classification registers, clerk's books, complete record, library accession books, map of school district, school censuses, school textbook and equipment record books, teacher's reports to county superintendent, and treasurer's books.
Swift County: School District No. 26/2196, Appleton Township: An Inventory of Its Records gr01371
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district. Including attendance registers, classification registers, clerk's books, school censuses, and treasurer's books.
Swift County: School District No. 30/2198, Hegbert Township: An Inventory of Its Records gr01372
Records documenting the administration and activities of this school district. Including all in one record, all complete record and report, attendance registers, classification registers, clerk's books, complete record, establishment and dissolution papers, library accession books, map of school district, pupil record sheets, school censuses, school textbook record books, teacher's reports to county superintendent, and treasurer's records.
Washington County, Minnesota: An Inventory of Telephone Directories lb00113
A collection of telephone directories for cities in Washington County, Minnesota. Telephone directories are published by telephone companies and include alphabetical listings of residential and business phone numbers and street addresses in the white pages, and a listing of businesses arranged by subject in the yellow pages. Each entry on the inventory lists the city name, year of coverage, and the shelf number of the printed volume or microfiche set which includes that city.

New and Updated Catalog Records

Ada Cooperative Creamery (Ada, Minn.). Ada Cooperative Creamery records, 1920-1956.
Minutes, annual reports, financial records, and other records of a cooperative creamery established in Norman County, Minnesota in 1920.
Brackett, George Augustus, 1836-1921, compiler. George A. Brackett photograph collection, 1851-1940.
Collection includes one photograph album, 15 pages of a second photograph album, and four photographs relating to George A. Brackett who moved to Minneapolis in 1857 and was active in business, real estate, and railroad construction. The album labeled "G.A.B. #10" includes views from a Northern Pacific exploratory expedition of 1869, early views of St. Anthony and Minneapolis, and images around Fort Snelling. Early views include Red River ox carts, Minnehaha Falls, falls at St. Anthony and the Mississippi riverfront as well as the Dakota internment camp at Fort Snelling. Pages from second album contain views of British Columbia, Canada including Atlin City, Atlin Lake, Discovery, and the hydraulic gold mining and panning in the area during the Klondike gold rush. These images were reportedly photographed by Brackett's daughter-in-law Mollie Brackett during his work with Atlin Mining Company. Other photographs include a mural depicting Brackett in his role with the volunteer fire department, identified group portraits, and a photograph thought to be of a reunion at Fort Snelling of the First Minnesota Volunteer Regiment.
Chippewa County (Minn.). School District No. 2 (Tunsberg : Township). Clerk's book, 1948-1952.
Organized in 1900. Consolidated with School District No. 45 in 1951.
Chippewa County (Minn.). School District No. 29 (Kragero : Township). Treasurer's book, 1949-1951.
Sorenson School. Organized in 1875. Consolidated with School District No. 45 in 1951.
Chippewa County (Minn.). School District No. 49 (Kragero : Township). Records, 1949-1951.
Clerk's book (1949-1951) and treasurer's book (1949-1951).
Chippewa County (Minn.). School District No. 52 (Big Bend : Township). Records, 1945-1951.
Clerk's book (1949-1951) and treasurer's book (1945-1951).
Chippewa County (Minn.). School District No. 68 (Kragero : Township). Records, 1949-1951.
Clerk's book (1950-1951) and treasurer's book (1949-1951).
Chippewa County (Minn.). School District No. 89 (Kragero : Township). Treasurer's book, 1949-1951.
Lindbergh School. Organized in 1920, jointly with Swift County. Consolidated with School District No. 45 in 1951.
Graves, Peter, 1852-1957, interviewee. Oral history interview with Peter Graves, 1950 October 5.
Subjects discussed include Graves's parents, Battle of Sugar Point in 1898, Chief Bugonaygeshig, law enforcement on the reservation, fish and lumber industry on the reservation, and the origins of his name "Englishman."
Hokanson, Nels Magnus, 1885- , interviewee. Oral history interview with Nels Hokanson, 1977 March 19.
Subjects discussed include family background, education, Irish-Swedish conflicts, amusements as a child, caves, history of Swede Hollow, and employment of Swede Hollow residents.
Joint Powers District No. 6011 (Appleton, Madison, Marietta, and Milan). Records, 1988-1996.
Joint powers agreement draft (1989), joint powers correspondence (1988-1989), policy manual (circa 1995), and meeting minutes (November 1993-June 1996).
McEvoy, James F., interviewee. Oral history interview with James F. McEvoy, 1968 February 5.
Subjects discussed include personal interest in the cooperative movement, McEvoy's first job with co-ops, educational program for co-ops, the first co-op grocery stores in the Twin Cities, successes and failures of co-ops, McEvoy's objections to several co-op projects, gasoline co-ops, rural vs. urban co-ops, what hurt the co-op movement, how co-ops should be helped, the future of co-ops, co-ops vs. private companies, co-ops as intellectually democratic movements, co-op credit unions, health, wholesale.
Minnesota. Common School District No. 873 (Madison). Treasurer's book, 1958-1961.
Originally Lac qui Parle County School District No. 52; became Common School District No. 873 in 1957. Consolidated with Independent School District 377 in 1958.
Minnesota. Common School District No. 909 (Hantho : Township). Records, 1929-1961.
Clerk's books (1929-1961) and treasurer's books (1948-1960).
Minnesota. Independent School District No. 2853 (Lac qui Parle Valley). Meeting minutes, 1996-1997.
Minutes continue a set included in the Independent School District No. 74/377, Madison, records.
Minnesota. Common School District No. 851 (Hantho : Township). Records, 1943-1961.
Clerk's book (1958-1961), closed school contracts (1955-1956), school censuses (1950-1954), and treasurer's books (1943-1960).
Minnesota. Independent School District No. 376 (Marietta). Records, 1977-1990.
Newsletters (1987-1990); school censuses (1977-1984); and school programs that include school plays, commencement ceremonies, and homecoming (1981-1990).
Pyratel, Joseph, interviewee. Oral history interview with Joseph Pyratel, 1976 November 21.
Subjects discussed include family history, his education, his father's work as a miner, and Slovene community life in Ely, Minnesota.
Scott, Roy Vernon, 1927- . Correspondence with Ralph and Muriel Hidy, 1958-1985.
Correspondence between historian Roy V. Scott and historian Ralph Hidy and his wife Muriel, co-authors of The Great Northern Railway: a history, concerning its publication.
St. Paul Winter Carnival royalty photograph collection, 1989, 1991, 2000, 2014-2016.
St. Paul Winter Carnival's Queen of Snow and King Boreas portraits and photographs from select years.
William Yungbauer & Sons, compiler. William Yungbauer & Sons furniture photograph albums, approximately 1900.
Images of furniture designed and manufactured by William Yungbauer & Sons of St. Paul, Minnesota including notes and sketches on back of select photographs.

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