Views from the Past...

Coming of Age Exhibit Coming of Age: The 1968 Generation

​On display December 9 - June 16, 2017

Come visit the Blue Earth County Historical Society December 9 through June 16, 2018  and see “Coming of Age, The 1968 Generation,” a traveling exhibit that explores the self-expression, upheaval, change and  sounds of the 60s and Vietnam War. 

In “Coming of Age, The 1968 Generation,” visitors will glimpse into the lives of Minnesotans who grew up in and around 1968. The exhibit features six graphic panels, a record album flip interactive, a computer game show activity and a station where you can create-your-own magnetic magazine cover.   

This exhibit is on temporary loan from the Minnesota History Center in St. Paul and will be traveling to venues throughout Minnesota


Celebration Minnesota State, Mankato 150 Exhibit Celebrating Minnesota State, Mankato 150 Years

From Normal School to University

Throughout 2017 and 2018, Minnesota State University, Mankato will be celebrating its 150 Anniversary and the Historical Society is excited to be a part of the celebration. This exhibit will include photographs and artifacts featuring noteworthy individuals and places on campus as well as fun facts and stories about the college and student life. The exhibit  runs through November 25 and is free and open to the public.

Walking Tour booklets for Valley Campus are available through the History Center Gift Shop for self-guided tours.

characters portraying the Cherry Sisters Cherry Sisters

The 2017 Medicine Show will take place on August 19 from 1-4 p.m. 

Shows will begin at 1, 2, and 3 p.m. Between shows, take in a variety of different acts throughout the grounds.

This event is Free; admission charge for tours of the Hubbard House. 


Saint John's Bible Exhibit The Saint John's Bible

Open July 8-September 1, 2017


Beginning in 1996, the community of Saint John’s Abbey and University in Collegeville, Minnesota, began planning and working on The Saint John’s Bible, the first handwritten, illuminated Bible commissioned by a Benedictine monastery in five hundred years. The work of creating the Bible involved countless hours of meetings, artist studio time and financial support of almost 1,400 individual donors. On May 9, 2011, the last word of the Bible was penned, bringing the almost 15-year production phase to completion.

This unique undertaking combines a tradition of craftsmanship with the latest capabilities of computer technology and electronic communication. The words are handwritten on vellum (calfskin) using hand-cut quills fashioned from turkey, swan or goose feathers, and ancient inks hand-ground from natural minerals and stones such as lapis lazuli, malachite, and vermillion. The pages are illuminated with the brilliance of 24-karat gold leaf, silver leaf and platinum. The complete work includes 1,127 handwritten pages over 7 books and over 160 major artworks.

The Blue Earth County Historical Society will host a reproduction of The Saint John’s Bible. On display at the History Center will be a replica of the volume containing Gospels and Acts as well as 25 framed prints of artwork from all of the illustrated volumes. This exhibition was made possible by generous support from St. John’s Episcopal Church, Mankato. St. John’s Episcopal Church in Mankato was founded in 1866 and continues to reside on the corner of Warren and Broad Streets in Mankato. 

Summer Day Camp Poster Awesome Women in History

BECHS Kid's History Day Camp


Blue Earth County Wedding Married in Style: Blue Earth County Weddings

From simple to extravagant, weddings come in all forms. View wedding dresses from the past 100 years and all the treasures that go into making each wedding day special in our latest exhibit.

This exhibit is free and can be viewed at the History Center during open hours. It runs through July 1, 2017.

Winter Wonderland Exhibit Winter Wonderland: Frozen Fun in Blue Earth County

Join us at the Blue Earth County Historical Society for our latest temporary exhibit! Take a walk through winter's past and experience what it was like in Blue Earth County. Special look at the 1920 Mankato Winter Carnival! 

This exhibit is free and open to the public!

Upcoming events with this exhibit:

BECHS Annual Meeting - March 5

History Bits and Bites - March 16

Labor Day History Center Closed

Happy Laobr Day!

BECHS Gift Shop Holiday Gift Shop

There is still time to shop the BECHS gift shop before the holidays, You can look through many items that we have online. To ensure you have your gifts for Christmas, please visit the Gift Shop for all your purchases!


BECHS will be closed December 24-January 2. Happy Holidays!

Fur Trade Exhibit at the Blue Earth County Historical Society Fur Trade In Minnesota Exhibit

Explore the fascinating people and places of Minnesota’s first global business in “Fur Trade in Minnesota,” a new traveling exhibit from the Minnesota History Center opening  October 20, 2016, at the Blue Earth County History Center.

Hundreds of years ago, Minnesota played a key role in the fur trade, which stretched across five continents.  Visitors to the exhibit can lift a 45-pound Voyageur’s pack, learn how the fur trade shaped Ojibwe art and discover how beaver pelts could be transformed into sleek, stately hats that were all the rage among wealthy Europeans.

“Fur Trade in Minnesota” will be on view through January 7, 2017.

Special Programs with this Exhibit:

History Bits and Bites on December 21, from 12-1 p.m., will view a documentary about fur trade and discuss this film as a group. There will also be time to view the exhibit. Special this month only - Free and open to the public!

Ghosts from the Past 2017 Ghosts from the Past 2017

Come one come all! BECHSis celebrating its 31st annual Ghosts From The Past as well as Minnesota State University, Mankato's 150th Anniversary, and to honor this, this year's program revolves around different history from Minnesota State. Join us to learn more about

  • Julia Sears Departure Protests
  • The 1922 Fire
  • Women's Dorm Life
  • Men's Housing
  • Barracks Life
  • Riding the Bus
  • 1972 Protests

Guides will lead guest around the History Center to meet differnt "ghosts from the past." Performances begin every 15 minutes; last performance begins at 8 p.m.

Ghosts from the Past will be October 26 and 27 from 6-9 p.m. each night at the History Center. Tickets are $8/adults, $5/BECHS Members and children 5-17 and can be reserved by calling 507-345-5566 during business hours or emailing

Labor Day backgroud image History Center Closed - Labor Day

The History Center will be closed on Saturday, September 3 in observance of Labor Day. We will re-open on Tuesday, September 6 at 9 a.m.

The Historic R. D. Hubbard House will be open Saturday, Septmber 3 and Sunday, September 4 from 1-4 p.m. each day. 

Images of Welsh Locations in Blue Earth County Welsh Settlements in Blue Earth County Bus Tour

Join the Blue Earth County Historical Society and the Minnestoa Welsh Association for a narrated bus tour of Blue Earth County's historic Welsh Settlements of Judson, Cambria and Lake Crystal. Ticket includes narrated bus ride, six stops and catered linch. Please wear comfortable walking shoes. 

Bus tours begins from and returns to the History Center.

Tickets are $30/BECHS or MWA Members, $35/General Public

Please call 507-345-5566 to reserve your spot today as space is limited.

Memorial Day Graphic Memorial Day

The History Center will be closed May 27, in observance of Memorial Day. We will reopen Tuesday, May 30 at 9 a.m.

The Historic R. D. Hubbard House will be open May 27 and May 28 from 1-4 p.m. for tours. 

Thank you!

Hubbard House Hubbard House Events

The Hubbard House has many great events coming this summer. 

During the month of September, the Hubbard House will be open Saturdays and Sundays from 1-4 p.m. for guided tours.

Hubbard House Gaslight Series, September 13, 7 p.m. - Farmer Labor Rally of 1918
Farmers and Laborers faced social, politcal and economic problems that were different from any faced by people like the Hubbard Family. Come experience a historic look at a typical 1918 rally with folk music, dances and firey speeches.  Admission is $8/adults, $5/children 5-17 and BECHS Members.


When Home Won't Let You Stay Exhibit When Home Won't Let You Stay: Stories of Refugees

The Blue Earth County Historical Society is pleased to announce the opening of “When Home Won’t Let You Stay,” a poignant photography exhibition about refugees in Minnesota by documentary photographer James A. Bowey.

The exhibition on display at the Blue Earth County History Center runs from May 7 to July 30. It seeks to provide a new perspective on the often hidden lives and compelling experiences of refugees in our communities. The exhibition consists of contemporary color portraits accompanied by first-person stories highlighting the plight and resiliency of refugees who call Minnesota home. BECHS is the inaugural presentation of the exhibition which will travel to other Minnesota communities in the summer and fall.

“We are very excited to present this important work,” said Jessica Potter, Executive Director of BECHS. “It’s an important contemporary issue that links us to the vital role that migrants and refugees play in the history of this region.”

The number of globally displaced people has risen dramatically in recent years and is expected to continue to rise in response to ongoing conflicts, poverty, and climate change. International and national events have prompted conversations in communities across the country about our American roots, our national identity and the refugee experience.

“As a documentary artist I’m drawn to stories that provide a window into the state of contemporary society,” said Bowey, “and I think at the present moment there is no more compelling story than the plight of refugees.”

The exhibition is being supported in part by Minnesota Council of Churches (MCC) Refugee Services through a grant from The Linking Communities Project supporting the welcome and resettlement of refugees. MCC Refugee Services provides comprehensive services to support refugees in the Twin Cities and Mankato areas.

BECHS along with MCC and the Greater Mankato Diversity Council, will co-host a community conversation at 1 p.m. on May 21. The Society’s History Bits and Bites will feature a presentation by Bowey at noon on June 29. 


James A. Bowey is a documentary photographer who explores issues of human rights and social connection. He has spent his career covering a wide range of global and national stories from the war in Bosnia to Hurricane Katrina. His work has been featured by The New York Times, Time Magazine, the Associated Press, as well as in numerous exhibitions. Bowey is also an educator and was on the faculty at Winona State University from 2008 to 2015 where he won the national WOW award for innovation in higher education.


From more information about “When Home Won’t Let You Stay,” visit:

Trivia Night at Old Main Trivia Night Fundraiser at Old Main Village, May 20, 2016


Join us for food, cash bar, fun and prizes at the Trivia Night Fundraiser for the Blue Earth County Historical Society at Old Main Village.
Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and Trivia starts at 7 p.m.

Appetizers provided by Old Main Village include bacon wrapped scallops, petite quiche, BBQ meatballs, dessert bars and more. Appetizers are included in ticket price. Cash bar provided by Buffalo Wild Wings.

Trivia questions will cover a wide range of topics and prizes will be given away throughout the evening with a grand prize for the best overall team.


A Stitch In Time Exhibit at BECHS A Stitch in Time: Blue Earth County Quilts

From baby quilts to Grandma’s wedding quilt, they all have a story. Discover quilts from the Historical Society’s collection dating from the 1880s to today on exhibit at the History Center. This exhibit is free and open to the public.

Special exhibit opening on April 2 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with refreshments. Audrey Gatchell and Ken Ziegler will be in the Discovery Lab discussing their family quilts and people of all ages will have the opporunity to contribute to a paper quilt.

Image of guides at the Hubbard House Hubbard House Assistant Position Open



The R. D. Hubbard House Assistant is a part-time, seasonal position that exists for the operation of the Blue Earth County Historical Society (BECHS) R. D. Hubbard House and will work with the BECHS staff and volunteers to meet the needs of visitors to the house. Specific duties include, but are not limited to:

Hubbard House

·Responsible for the seasonal operation (May-September) of the R. D. Hubbard House, including the areas of tours, visitor services, gift shop, maintenance, cleaning and security.

·Provide guided tours and educational programs to the general public

·Develop and implement living history programs

·Oversee the display and security of objects in the main house and carriage house; and perform light conservation as directed.

·Maintain accurate gift shop sales records and inventory at the Hubbard House Gift Shop

·Perform light cleaning and maintenance of the property.


·Interest in local history required. Knowledge of Minnesota history, Blue Earth County history, and/or 1900s Victorian history helpful.

·Excellent verbal, interpersonal and communication skills.

·Self-motivated with the ability to work alone and with a variety of personalities. Must be detail-oriented and highly organized

·Good customer relations skills

·Professional attitude

·Ability to work the posted Hubbard House schedule:

· May – Saturday and Sunday 1-4 p.m. (7 hrs./week + scheduled tours);

· June – August – Friday and Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Sunday 1-4 p.m. (16 hrs./week + tours);

· September - Saturday and Saturday 1-4 p.m. (7 hrs./week)

· Note: Hubbard House seasonal staff are allowed only ONE weekend day off PER month.

Wages $9.00/hour

To Apply Send Resumes to:

Jessica Potter
Blue Earth County Historical Society
424 Warren Street
Mankato, MN  56001

Applications now being accepted through April 21.



History Bits and Bites History Bits and Bites

History Bits & Bites is the latest program at the Blue Earth County Historical Society. Join us on the third Thursday of each month at Noon for a great program. Each program is designed to last no more than 1 hour. Bring your lunch and learn a bit of history. Admission is $5 for adults, Free for BECHS Members and children under 18. Here are the upcoming programs:

August 17 - The Form of Letters by Brad Coulter

September 21 - Minnesota Welsh Association

October 19 - Out of Chaos: Music of the Times with James Gullickson and Mark Halvorson