Historical museum with unique, professionally designed exhibits defining the history of Freeborn County. We have an excellent research library. A historical village with 18 buildings - County School, Church, General Store, Log Cabins, Blacksmith Shop, Barbershop, Bank, Shoe Shop, Mill house, Train Depot and more. A unique new display area contains the Eddie Cochran/Marion Ross exhibit. Both were natives of Albert Lea and went on to make a name internationally - Cochran in rock 'n roll and Ross as Mrs. Cunningham in "Happy Days." Another unusual exhibit is the World War I and World War II poster collection on permanent loan from the American Legion Club. The historical village contains a variety of buildings - a country school, three distinctly different log cabins, a general store, a blacksmith shop, woodworking shop, country church, and a mill house. A modern building houses farm equipment, fire fighting equipment, and transportation vehicles. There is space provided on the grounds for more antique farm equipment. The story of Southern Minnesota settlement by Europeans is told in a variety of ways. Researchers spend hours, sometimes days, looking through microfilm and other resources tracing family history or other historical subjects. Room settings, display cases, open exhibits, and miniature business settings create learning and fun experiences for the viewer. Ordinary items that can relate to today's lifestyle are on display, in addition to the unusual pieces -- such as the square grand piano, jicara, knitting machine, mastodon tooth, salesman's sample of the oscillator washer, pot shards, and a log scriber. The county's story is told of a time when eight grades were educated in one room, the general store covered the needs not found in the vegetable garden, and when one horse-power was a luxury.
Additional Date Information: Museum & Library open year round, April-Sept TU-FR 10am-5pm, Oct - March 10am-4pm, Village open May-Sep TU-FR 10am-5pm. Museum Check website for Saturday openings and special event dates.